[Numpy-discussion] Floating point exception with numpy and embedded python interpreter

Thomas Schreiner tmp-gmane@tschreiner....
Thu Sep 20 08:51:20 CDT 2007

Arkaitz Bitorika <arkaitz.bitorika <at> gmail.com> writes:
> I've verified that the function causes the exception when embedded in  
> the program but not when used from a simple C program with just a main 
> () function. The successful version iterates 31 times over the for  
> loop while the crashing one fails the 30th time that it does "pinf *=  
> mul".
> Now we know exactly where the crash is, but no idea how to fix it ;).  


I just found this old thread, and it looks like I've got the very same problem:

Turns out that Borland C++ Builder (which I'm using, and you are most probably
as well) can't get to infinity by multiplying a number with 1E10 over and over,
but throws an exception instead when ecceeding number space:

On 22 Apr 2006, at 20:12, Andrew Straw wrote:
> static double
> pinf_init(void)
> {
>     double mul = 1e10;
>     double tmp = 0.0;
>     double pinf;
>     pinf = mul;
>     for (;;) {
>         pinf *= mul;
>         if (pinf == tmp) break;
>         tmp = pinf;
>     }
>     return pinf;
> }

My proposal is to ask the numpy people to patch numpy as follows:

Don't multiply, but instead create pinf according to IEEE 754 specifications:
  char inf_string[9] = "\x00\x00\x00\x00\x00\x00\xF0\x7F";
  double pinf = ((double*)inf_string)[0];

This will get rid of the overflow for little endian machines. For big endian
architectures, just reverse the byte order in inf_string.

I already submitted a bug report to their bugtracker.



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