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Re: [Axiom-developer] was: Boot vs. Lisp / a smaller project

From: Martin Rubey
Subject: Re: [Axiom-developer] was: Boot vs. Lisp / a smaller project
Date: 02 Nov 2005 15:12:52 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.09 (Gnus v5.9.0) Emacs/21.4

C Y <address@hidden> writes:

> I'd be curious - how many of these bugs are due to mathematical errors
> (e.g. algorithms that are incorrect) vs. "programmer level" bugs (e.g.
> "whoops, semicolon there")?  (Not rhetorical - I really am interested.

Well, most bugs (or, maybe: surprising results) I encountered so far are really
design problems. For example: that %pi < %e is really a design problem of the
EXPR domain...

Although I think that there are cures, they involve a lot of work. Currently I
have little time for Axiom, so I try to fix small things.

> Well, once I get the units package figured out (if I ever do...
> grumble...) 

you reallly should.

> I'd be glad to start trying to document the foundational design principles of
> set theory used in the Axiom libraries. (I guess that would be the core of
> the SPAD/Aldor language design as well?) 

I'm not quite sure what you mean. But I'd advise you anyhow to take up a small
project (especially if you find units too big for the moment) and implement
this first.

In fact, here is something for you:

Currently, there is a category StepThrough defined in catdef.spad. It is used
only in very few places, and as I noted in

it is braindead.

What it really should do is to implement the notion of a countable set. I was
surprised at first, but this can be effectively implemented.

So, maybe you would like to do this. You will probably learn a *lot* about
axiom rather quickly, since you will have to implement nextItem and prevItem
for many domains, and you will have to document what it is used for in those
few where it is already used, i.e., GENPGCD and in PFBRU.

I have already working code for fraction.spad, so if you are interested, I'll
send you the details.


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