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MathGroup Archive 1995

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specifying arbitrary precision thruout calculations

  • To: mathgroup at christensen.cybernetics.net
  • Subject: [mg440] specifying arbitrary precision thruout calculations
  • From: Jonathan Rich <rich at earth.nwu.edu>
  • Date: Wed, 1 Feb 1995 20:19:41 -0600

Is there any way to specify, at the start of a session, or at the start of
a Mathematica script or program, that one would like MMA to use a given
precision (i.e. something other than $MachinePrecision) thruout the
calculations?  It doesn't appear to me that "PrecisionGoal" is what I want
as that is an option for specific numerical functions.  In other words,
what I want is something like "SetPrecision[]", but not for a specific
expression but rather a global default value which tells MMA to assume such a
precision for all expressions and numerical calculations, unless specified
otherwise.  Then when
one typed "x=3.", x would automatically have whatever precision one had
globally set at the beginning of the session.  I guess this would
correspond to use of C or Fortran compiler flags like "-r8" that
instruct the compiler that all variables are to be double precision
(for example).  Is there a way of doing such a thing in mathematica?

Thanks for your help and advice.

Jonathan Rich


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