in switzerland you aren't allowed to have a train with exactly 256 axles because of an integer overflow in the axle counting machine

i wish i could fix my software bugs by making it illegal to cause them


@lynnesbian Oh hey! I'm the person who originally submitted this to reddit.

As far as I know, this rule is no longer in place. It still shows up in some recent-ish documents (like [1]), but a train driver I know showed me a screenshot of a document explicitly stating that this paragraph was made obsolete.

It also doesn't show up in the current R 300.5 anymore. [2]



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@lynnesbian I think the original limitation was caused by mechanical counters with eight physical bits (so, not actually software), which have now been phased out.

@draemmli @lynnesbian
Otoh, the German LZB linear train control is 8-bit to its core. One sector is up to 12.7 km long, 127 × 100 m loop sections, for signed 8-bit position counters.

@draemmli thanks for clearing this up! i managed to find a slightly more recent document mentioning it, but you're right, it seems to have disappeared now

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