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*To*: "'IEEE 754'" <stds-754@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>*Subject*: RE: Questions on data transfer and non-arithmetic handling rules*From*: "William M Klein" <wmklein@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>*Date*: Sat, 30 Apr 2011 16:39:01 -0500*Cc*: "'Charles Stevens'" <charles.stevens@xxxxxxxx>*In-reply-to*: <COL112-W129FC9BCF42EA29088D5C9839D0@phx.gbl>*List-help*: <http://listserv.ieee.org/cgi-bin/wa?LIST=STDS-754>, <mailto:LISTSERV@LISTSERV.IEEE.ORG?body=INFO%20STDS-754>*List-owner*: <mailto:STDS-754-request@LISTSERV.IEEE.ORG>*List-subscribe*: <mailto:STDS-754-subscribe-request@LISTSERV.IEEE.ORG>*List-unsubscribe*: <mailto:STDS-754-unsubscribe-request@LISTSERV.IEEE.ORG>*References*: <COL112-W129FC9BCF42EA29088D5C9839D0@phx.gbl>*Sender*: stds-754@xxxxxxxx*Thread-index*: AcwHdcvhssEUz9dBRee3eF8f322iOwAB4bFQ

to the list (and Chuck who already knows this), As one of (if not the only one) from the COBOL group who is in the "others differ " group,, I read the initial "scope" and "purpose" clauses of 754 to mean that this Standard is intended for "arithmetic" and the primary purpose of the "conversion" sections is for converting from one numeric format to another when used in/for arithmetic statements, operations, or functions (and for comparisons involving numbers in an arithmetic context). The title of the Standard, "IEEE Standard for Floating-Point Arithmetic" is something that I have always believed means what it says and says what it means, i.e. that this standard deals with the handling of data items (as we call them in COBOL) that are defined as one of the formats in this Standard WHEN it is used in or for arithmetic. If a programming language support NON arithmetic functionality for numeric items, then this is NOT the Standard that says how to do this. Obviously, in many (probably most) cases where there are "similar" functions for the same types of data items one of which is arithmetic and one that is not, there is nothing in 754 that says that they cannot (much less should not) get the same results. It is just that (as I understand it) this Standard says NOTHING about the handling of such items outside of arithmetic contexts.
1) I do not find any rule offhand in IEEE Std 754-2008 Clause 5.4.2 or elsewhere that says what happens when the "source" item is exactly the same format (and encoding) as the "sink" item. My personal assumption is that this would be a "bit-for-bit" transfer, with no reformatting at all, and that's what the COBOL rules specify. |

**Follow-Ups**:**Re: Questions on data transfer and non-arithmetic handling rules***From:*Stephen Canon

**References**:**Questions on data transfer and non-arithmetic handling rules***From:*Charles Stevens

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