Alternative floating point support for GHC.

Category: Numerical

Hackage Homepage

About altfloat

A replacement for the standard Haskell floating point types and supporting functions. There are a number of shortcomings which I feel severely hinder Haskell's utility for numerical computation. These shortcomings include * There is no way to sanely convert between Haskell's floating types -- not even between Double and CDouble. The implementation of the 'realToFrac' function goes through 'Rational', which loses information as 'Rational' cannot represent all floating point values. * Making floating types an instance of 'Ord' makes no sense. 'Ord' is for totally ordered data types, which floats are not. As a result, a number of library functions (such as 'max' and 'sort') produce nonsensical results. * The 'Enum' instance for floating types similarly makes little sense. While 'fromEnum' and 'toEnum' functions use 'Int' instead of 'Integer', limiting their usefulness, 'pred' and 'succ' can be defined in a much more useful way. * Functions that should care about negative zeros, such as 'signum' and 'abs', do not. * Some functions, such as 'floor', have nonsensical behaviour for non-finite input. * The selection of floating point library functions pales in comparison to C. This problem is made worse since, as noted above, it is impossible to convert losslessly from 'Double' to 'CDouble' in order to use the FFI. * There is no mechanism for handling rounding modes or exceptions. This package is intended to address all of the above issues, and more. Also provided, for convenience, is an alternative to the standard Prelude which includes features from this library and the non-overlapping parts of the standard Prelude.


Nick Bowler







base, ghc-prim, integer-gmp, integer-simple, integer


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Older Versions

0.2, 0.2.1, 0.2.2, 0.3, 0.3.1