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created: 05/29/2002; small changes: 11/11/2002; revised: 05/25/2015

CHAPTER 30 — IEEE 754 Floating Point

This chapter is about the IEEE 754 floating point standard. This is a standard for the floating point numbers that are used in nearly all computers and programming languages since 1985. Java floating point (on its virtual processor) and MIPS floating point (on real hardware) conform to this standard.

Chapter Topics:


(Review: ) Is it absolutely essential that a processor support floating point data?