[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
Re: bignums are bogus
- To: firstname.lastname@example.org, sandra <@cs.utah.edu:email@example.com>
- Subject: Re: bignums are bogus
- From: Jeff Dalton <jeff%aiva.edinburgh.ac.uk@Cs.Ucl.AC.UK>
- Date: Thu, 16 Apr 87 14:04:58 GMT
> "Common Lisp in principle imposes no limit on the magnitude of an
Note "in principle".
> I don't know of any machine that has an infinitely large amount of memory,
> or even an infinitely large address space.
Practical limits of this sort also apply to things like the maximum number
of conses, the maximum length of a list, etc. Presumably, you don't think
lists are bogus...
> I expect some implementations of bignums have other constraints as well:
> assuming the number of bigits is a fixnum, storing the bigits in an array
> (limiting the number of bigits to the maximum array size), or similar
> representation-related problems.
Well, if the representation imposes a limit lower than that imposed by
the total storage available we might be justified in saying it is not a
correct implementation. Of course, we would only be inclined to do this
if the lower limit was relatively small (e.g. number of bigits in a byte).
Now I suppose there'll be hundreds of these messages (at least as many as
about compiling CASE).