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- To: ACW at MIT-AI
- From: GLS at MIT-MC (Guy L. Steele, Jr.)
- Date: Thu, 12 Oct 78 22:27:00 GMT
- Cc: (BUG LISP) at MIT-MC
- Original-date: 12 OCT 1978 1827-EDT
I think that // of one argument should be that argument, not zero
as it presently is. ...
Your argument is well-taken, and is similar to the approach taken
in APL with respect to the reduction operator. MacLISP, however,
purposely uses the "unary" forms of the noncommutative arithmetic
operators so that (- n) can mean what it "obviously" means,
i.e. negation. By analogy with this, (// n) denotes the reciprocal
of n. For fixnums this trivially produces zero, but for consistency
with flonums we must do this.