[Maxima] gcd problem

Robert Dodier robert.dodier at gmail.com
Tue Feb 13 17:29:48 CST 2007


On 2/13/07, Richard Fateman <fateman at cs.berkeley.edu> wrote:

> So you can concoct examples where you bump up against some limits somewhere.
> It is much preferable to say something like "do you really want to do that?"
> than to silently go off for an hour or a day or ... or run out of stack or
> memory or electricity.  Removing limits is not always a good idea if the
> next step leads to an intolerable situation.

I simply can't see any point to imposing a limits of this kind.
It's trivial to make up examples of computations which will be
too big in one way or another. How about 3!!! ? Is that too big?
No? How about 3!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! then? Maybe
3!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ?
How about for i thru <huge number> do block([M: huge_matrix()],
invert(M)) ? Should we try to prevent that? Why not?
What if I buy a big computer to solve just this problem?

This is a very simple-minded game; I think we can all make up
further examples ad infinitum. The point is that capping exponents
is like chasing the bubbles in the waterbed.

FWIW
Robert


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