# [Bug 11531] precisionDecimal terminology

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Mon, 13 Dec 2010 04:12:02 +0000

Message-Id: <E1PRzla-0003tw-PW@jessica.w3.org>
```http://www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/show_bug.cgi?id=11531

--- Comment #6 from Dave Peterson <davep@iit.edu> 2010-12-13 04:12:02 UTC ---
(In reply to comment #4)
> Indeed. So what we're actually saying is that P is the position of the least
> significant digit relative to the decimal point, counting towards the right,
> with the digit immediately before the decimal point being numbered zero. The
> question is what to call this quantity. Currently the XSD spec has three names
> for it: scale, arithmeticPrecision, and precision.

Well, we never call the property of values "scale", though one could infer that
from the names of those facets.  The facets were created in Jan 2005; before
then we just used additional clauses in the fractionDigits facet and added a
"minFractionDigits" facet.  Some folks had the same problem you did with
negative counts of fractionDigits, so the name was changed.

I *think* that the only place we just say "precision" is in the very
introduction to precisionDecimal, where we say "...(arithmetic) precision..."
the first time, to indicate that that's the kind of precision we're talking
about.  We must remember that 754 isn't the whole universe, and "precision"
means different things to different people.  (N.B.:  The formal name of the
property is "arithmeticPrecision"; when simply referring to that particular
kind of precision, in ordinary English we say simply "arithmetic precision" (
no fancy made-up words).

(For thaqt matter, 754 just uses "precision" because they only talk about one
kind of precision.  By the same logic, we could just say "precision" because we
only talk about one kind of precision.  ;-)  )

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Received on Monday, 13 December 2010 04:12:04 UTC

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