Answer to Question #55251 in Other Engineering for Jack

Question #55251
I need help with this program in Java A cancellation error occurs when you are manipulating a very large number with a very small number. The large number may cancel out the smaller number. For example, the result of 100000000.0 + 0.000000001 is equal to 100000000.0. To avoid cancellation errors and obtain more accurate results, carefully select the order of computation. For example, in computing the following series, you will obtain more accurate results by computing from right to left rather than from left to right: 1 + 1/2 + 1/3 + . . . + 1/n Write a program that compares the results of the summation of the preceding series, computing from left to right and from right to left with n = 50000.
Expert's answer
import java.text.DecimalFormat;
import java.text.NumberFormat;

public class Main {
public static void main(String[] args) {
// initialize n
int n = 50000;

// loop from left to right
double leftToRight = 0;
for (int i = 1; i <= n; i++) {
leftToRight = leftToRight + 1.0 / i;
}

// loop from right to left
double rightToLeft = 0;
for (int i = n; i > 0; i--) {
rightToLeft = rightToLeft + 1.0 / i;
}

// print
System.out.println("Left to right: " + leftToRight);
System.out.println("Right to left: " + rightToLeft);
// this is used to format difference and avoid something like 1.234234234E-14
NumberFormat formatter = new DecimalFormat("#0.00000000000000000000");
System.out.println("Difference: " + formatter.format(rightToLeft - leftToRight));
}
}

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