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Re: denormals/subnormals are heading for extinction
- To: crosby at qwes dot math dot cmu dot edu, dewar at gnat dot com
- Subject: Re: denormals/subnormals are heading for extinction
- From: dewar at gnat dot com
- Date: Thu, 16 Aug 2001 16:27:43 -0400 (EDT)
- Cc: gcc at gcc dot gnu dot org, trt at cs dot duke dot edu
<<I would like to add that even if denormals are usually encounted
infrequently enough that any ineffeciencies with them are minor, there is
still a big cost. Implementation complexity. Having to add and waste the
transistors to deal with them in the first place.
Well modern chips have millions of transistors to waste these days, so
that is a weak argument at this stage.
<<If the gains and costs of denormals are neglegible, leave them out.
They're a headache you don't want to design for.
But the gains are by no means negligible. Remember that this subject has
been duked out with substantial opposition from the hardware folks, and
the IEEE standard (remember IEEE is a group with substantial hardware
input) decided that denormals are worthwhile for good reasons. The fact
that Scott believes otherwise, without good documentation, is not very