[SciPy-dev] New in fastumath ~ (means conjugate on floats and complex numbers)

eric eric at scipy.org
Sun Feb 24 01:31:08 CST 2002

> I finally realized that with a simple change we can use the unary operator on
> floats and complex numbers to mean complex conjugation.
> I've made the simple change in the CVS version of fastumath.
> So, in scipy complex-conjugation is as simple as
> ~a
> if a is a complex number (or a float).
> The only problem is that if a is an integer it still means bitwise inversion.
> Is the added convenience worth the possible confusion?  The problem is that
> complex conjugation happens all the time, but bitwise inversion rarely.


I like the idea of having a conjugate operator, but this introduces a dangerous
ambiguity.  There are many times where arrays are passed around without regard
for their numeric typecode.  If an integer array is passed into some function
that does a conjugate, a bit inversion occurs instead and silently produces
invalid results.  Are there any other symbols available?


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