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[Caml-list] recursive modules redux, & interface files
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Date: -- (:)
From: Markus Mottl <mottl@m...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] recursive modules redux, & interface files
On Mon, 19 Mar 2001, John Max Skaller wrote:
> 	Yes. More precisely, you cannot forward reference any symbol,
> however you _can_ call forward by passing a function backward as an
> argument.
> [This sucks though]

Note that you can always use local modules + functors so as not having
to pass around functions backwards, e.g.:

  module MakeM (Spec : sig val f : int -> int end) = struct
    open Spec

    let foo x = f x
    let bar x y = f x + f y
  end

  let bla g =
    let module Spec = struct let f = g end in
    let module M = MakeM (Spec) in
    print_int (M.foo 42 + M.bar 1 2)

  let _ = bla succ

Put the functions that should be "backwards parameterized" into functor
"MakeM". Then generate its specifcation "Spec" at runtime in some function
"bla" (here: "f" should be some function "g" passed at runtime) and apply
the functor "MakeM" to the specification "Spec". Now you can access the
"backwards parameterized" functions using the qualified module path "M."

If you feel annoyed by the fully qualified path, just write another
local module, in which you can "open" module "M" and provide some "start"
function in this new module to continue execution.

If you want even more hardcore moduling, you might be interested in trying
out the new "include"-keyword for structures (my favourite new language
extension! Thanks!) with the tricks above. You can do tremendous things
with it, like overriding specific functions of modules at runtime, etc.,
with hardly any effort.

The only remaining question here is: how efficiently can OCaml handle
local modules and local functor applications? I haven't measured it,
but I guess that this could be expensive.

Regards,
Markus Mottl

-- 
Markus Mottl, mottl@miss.wu-wien.ac.at, http://miss.wu-wien.ac.at/~mottl
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