Practice with Floating Point Numbers

The applet below creates problems for you to practice with floating point computations using decimal numbers. You will be given either a problem to solve within the constraints of a particular floating point format, or a solved problem and asked for details about the format. When you have computed your answer, enter it in the box and then click on the "Check Answer" button to find out if you did the problem correctly. You may try the same type of problem by clicking on the "Same Problem" button, or choose to practice with either the next type in sequence ("Next Problem" button) or a random type of problem ("Random Problem" button).

When you compute the number of significant digits, sometimes the numbers in the problem are insufficient to find the correct answer. This may happen when the raw product (before normalization and truncation) is exactly equal to the product of the original numbers. In such instances, just try another set of numbers. Also, remember to normalize with the correct number of significant digits before doing any computations!

You need a Java-capable browser such as Netscape 2 for Windows or Netscape 3 for Macintosh to be able to work with the units problems.

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