Publications:In Pursuit of Real Answers

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Title In Pursuit of Real Answers
Author Angela Yun Zhu and Walid Taha and Robert Cartwright and Matthieu Martel and Jeremy G. Siek
Year 2009
PublicationType Conference Paper
HostPublication 2009 International Conference on Embedded Software and Systems : ICESS 2009 : proceedings, 25-27 May, 2009, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, P.R. China
Conference ICESS'09, 6th International Conference on Embedded Software and Systems, Hangzhou, China, May 25-27
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Abstract Digital computers permeate our physical world. This phenomenon creates a pressing need for tools that help us understand a priori how digital computers can affect their physical environment. In principle, simulation can be a powerful tool for animating models of the world. Today, however, there is not a single simulation environment that comes with a guarantee that the results of the simulationare determined purely by a real-valued model and not by artifacts of the digitized implementation. As such, simulation with guaranteed fidelity does not yet exist. Towards addressing this problem, we offer an expository account of what is known about exact real arithmetic. We argue that this technology, which has roots that are over 200 years old, bears significant promise as offering exactly the right technology to build simulation environments with guaranteed fidelity. And while it has only been sparsely studied in this large span of time, there are reasons to believe that the time is right to accelerate research in this direction.