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alphaWorks Releases Big Decimal

IBM's alphaWorks this week released BigDecimal, a new Java-based technology that enables computer systems to generate commonly recognized decimal points. BigDecimal's decimal points are consistent with the arithmetic that is traditionally taught in school. The BigDecimal class provides a floating decimal point, a utility which is currently unavailable in Java.

BigDecimal allows developers to add "human-oriented arithmetic" to Java applications, and is a proposed replacement for the current java.math.BigDecimal class. The new class extends the existing class using ANSI X3.274 floating point arithmetic, which utilizes arithmetic in the same manner that people do. It implements immutable arbitrary-precision decimal numbers, with optional exponential notation.

The methods of BigDecimal also allow the standard operations for fixed and floating point arithmetic, along with methods for comparison, format conversions and hashing.

IBM will distribute the BigDecimal class to developers directly from the IBM alphaWorks Web site. For additional information, or to download the new class, visit the IBM alphaWorks Web site.