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[Caml-list] Automatic generation of mli files
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Date: -- (:)
From: Brian Hurt <brian.hurt@q...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Automatic generation of mli files
On Fri, 6 Jun 2003, Stefan Heimann wrote:

> Hi,
> 
> I searching for a way for generating the .mli file for a given source .ml
> file automatically. My basic idea is like that:
> 
> (1) Specify in the .ml file which values and types should be exported
>     and if a type should be exported abstract or not. This could be
>     done with a special comment at the top of the file.
> 
> (2) Filter the output of `ocamlc -i' to exclude the values and types
>     that should not be exported and to make the types abstract if
>     needed.

Not sure what advantage this would gain.  Step #1 is about as difficult as 
simply writting the .mli file directly.  Actually, a fairly fast way to 
produce an mli file is to do ocamlc -i foo.ml > foo.mli and fire up your 
local text editor and delete everything out of foo.mli you don't want 
exported.

I don't have a problem with .mli files being seperate from .ml files for 
two reasons:

1) .mli is your external interface- changing that interface generally 
means changing other files as well.  In this case, you're generally 
already chaging other files.

2) The compiler checks the signature of the .mli file against what is 
produced by the .ml file, so if you do "accidentally" change an exported 
function's interface, and forget to change the .mli to match, the compiler 
will catch it.

Brian


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