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Ricardo SIGNES


Number::Tolerant -- tolerance ranges for inexact numbers


 use Number::Tolerant;

 my $range  = tolerance(10 => to => 12);
 my $random = 10 + rand(2);

 die "I shouldn't die" unless $random == $range;

 print "This line will always print.\n";


Number::Tolerant creates a number-like object whose value refers to a range of possible values, each equally acceptable. It overloads comparison operations to reflect this.

I use this module to simplify the comparison of measurement results to specified tolerances.

 reject $product unless $measurement == $specification;



There is a new method on the Number::Tolerant class, but it also exports a simple function, tolerance, which will return an object of the Number::Tolerant class. Both use the same syntax:

 my $range = tolerance( $x => $method => $y);

The meaning of $x and $y are dependant on the value of $method, which describes the nature of the tolerance. Tolerances can be defined in five ways, at present:

  method              range
  plus_or_minus     | x ± y
  plus_or_minus_pct | x ± (y% of x)
  or_more           | x to Inf
  or_less           | x to -Inf
  to                | x to y
  infinite          | -Inf to Inf

For or_less and or_more, $y is ignored if passed. For infinite, $x and $y are both ignored, if passed.


Tolerances overload a few operations, mostly comparisons.


Tolerances with finite ranges numify to their center values. Tolerances with infinite ranges numify to their fixed end.


A tolerance stringifies to a short description of itself.

 infinite - "any number"
 to       - "x to y"
 or_more  - "x or more"
 or_less  - "x or less"
 plus_or_minus     - "x +/- y"
 plus_or_minus_pct - "x +/- y%"

A number is equal to a tolerance if it is neither less than nor greater than it. (See below).


A number is greater than a tolerance if it is greater than its maximum value.

A number is less than a tolerance if it is less than its minimum value.

No number is greater than an "or_more" tolerance or less than an "or_less" tolerance.

"...or equal to" comparisons include the min/max values in the permissible range, as common sense suggests.

tolerance intersection

A tolerance & a tolerance or number is the intersection of the two ranges. Intersections allow you to quickly narrow down a set of tolerances to the most stringent intersection of values.

 tolerance(5 => to => 6) & tolerance(5.5 => to => 6.5);
 # this yields: tolerance(5.5 => to => 6)

If the given values have no intersection, () is returned.

An intersection with a normal number will yield that number, if it is within the tolerance.


Overload | (bitwise or) to create multiple range options (unions).

Allow translation into forms not originally used:

 $range = tolerance(9 => to => 17); 


Ricardo SIGNES, <rjbs@cpan.org>


(C) 2004, Ricardo SIGNES. Number::Tolerant is available under the same terms as Perl itself.

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