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Rexx Comparisons

 
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Akatsukami

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Joined: 03 Oct 2009
Posts: 1786
Location: Bloomington, IL

PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 9:59 pm    Post subject: Rexx Comparisons
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This is not a problem...anymore. But it was interesting enough that I thought I'd mention it.

A member of my team came to me with a piece of Rexx. An IF statement that compared two account numbers was failing inexplicably; although the account numbers were obviously different, the comparison was returning "true".

After staring at the code and the trace longer than I'm willing to admit, the answer stuck me: the account numbers were composed all of decimal digits, so as far as a typeless language like Rexx was concerned, they really were numbers. The default number of significant digits in TSO REXX is nine...and the differences were all to the right of the ninth digit.

I advised him to either increase the number of significant digits with the NUMERIC DIGITS statement, or to use the built-in COMPARE function, which always does a character comparison on its first two arguments, even though they be numeric.
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prino

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Joined: 07 Feb 2009
Posts: 1101
Location: Oostende, Belgium

PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 11:58 pm    Post subject:
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This is just as interesting, a looping compare:

Code:
/* REXX exec to demonstrate funny compare behaviour */
a = '2e0'
b = '2ee'
c = '1e1'

say "a =" a
say "b =" b
say "c =" c

if a > b then say 'a > b' else say 'a ^> b'
if b > c then say 'b > c' else say 'b ^> c'
if c > a then say 'c > a' else say 'c ^> a'
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