[Numpy-discussion] Re: Numpy-discussion digest, Vol 1 #112 - 8 msgs

Nick Bower nick at nickbower.com
Thu Oct 12 10:30:22 CDT 2000

> So, in about 1 in ten runs (an hour each), the code
> would crash for no obvious reason.  It was a debugging
> nightmare.  If python catches underflows, I'm going
> back to FORTRAN.

hear hear.  or is that here here ;)  but it is a scarey concept isn't it?

i've pieced together an interactive python visualization environment (a 
clone of RSI's IDL in fact - nickbower.com/computer/pydl) and although i 
didn't write the plot engine, surely there's no way to "make the 
algorithm better" if you have no idea if the user will try to graph 
asymptotic curves for example.  it's just not realistic to expect the 
compiler to bomb out and force the user to tweak the calculation limits.

> On less crucial topics, I'm strongly in favor of
> preserving NaN and Inf.     If I want my code to crash
> when some computation goes awry, I'll use assert,
> and crash it myself.

i'm in favour of this too.  i think favouring people who don't want to 
come back after hours of code execution to find Nan and Inf arrays may 
shaft a great deal of people (be it a minority or not).


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