Mercurial > urweb
changeset 1504:71fdaef3b5dd
Tutorial: Names and Records
author | Adam Chlipala <adam@chlipala.net> |
---|---|
date | Sun, 17 Jul 2011 10:27:09 -0400 |
parents | 5588ac6fa9f3 |
children | 8c851e5508a7 |
files | doc/tlc.ur |
diffstat | 1 files changed, 35 insertions(+), 0 deletions(-) [+] |
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--- /dev/null Thu Jan 01 00:00:00 1970 +0000 +++ b/doc/tlc.ur Sun Jul 17 10:27:09 2011 -0400 @@ -0,0 +1,35 @@ +(* Chapter 2: Type-Level Computation *) + +(* This tutorial by <a href="http://adam.chlipala.net/">Adam Chlipala</a> is licensed under a <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/">Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License</a>. *) + +(* The last chapter reviewed some Ur features imported from ML and Haskell. This chapter explores uncharted territory, introducing the features that make Ur unique. *) + +(* * Names and Records *) + +(* Last chapter, we met Ur's basic record features, including record construction and field projection. *) + +val r = { A = 0, B = 1.2, C = "hi"} + +(* begin eval *) +r.B +(* end *) + +(* Our first taste of Ur's novel expressive power is with the following function, which implements record field projection in a completely generic way. *) + +fun project [nm :: Name] [t ::: Type] [ts ::: {Type}] [[nm] ~ ts] (r : $([nm = t] ++ ts)) : t = r.nm + +(* begin eval *) +project [#B] r +(* end *) + +(* This function introduces a slew of essential features. First, we see type parameters with explicit kind annotations. Formal parameter syntax like <tt>[a :: K]</tt> declares an <b>explicit</b> parameter <tt>a</tt> of kind <tt>K</tt>. Explicit parameters must be passed explicitly at call sites. In contrast, implicit parameters, declared like <tt>[a ::: K]</tt>, are inferred in the usual way.<br> +<br> +Two new kinds appear in this example. We met the basic kind <tt>Type</tt> in a previous example. Here we meet <tt>Name</tt>, the kind of record field names; and <tt>{Type}</tt> the type of finite maps from field names to types, where we'll generally refer to this notion of "finite map" by the name <b>record</b>, as it will be clear from context whether we're discussing type-level or value-level records. That is, in this case, we are referring to names and records <b>at the level of types</b> that <b>exist only at compile time</b>! By the way, the kind <tt>{Type}</tt> is one example of the general <tt>{K}</tt> kind form, which refers to records with fields of kind <tt>K</tt>.<br> +<br> +The English description of <tt>project</tt> is that it projects a field with name <tt>nm</tt> and type <tt>t</tt> out of a record <tt>r</tt> whose other fields are described by type-level record <tt>ts</tt>. We make all this formal by assigning <tt>r</tt> a type that first builds the singleton record <tt>[nm = t]</tt> that maps <tt>nm</tt> to <tt>t</tt>, and then concatenating this record with the remaining field information in <tt>ts</tt>. The <tt>$</tt> operator translates a type-level record (of kind <tt>{Type}</tt>) into a record type (of kind <tt>Type</tt>).<br> +<br> +The type annotation on <tt>r</tt> uses the record concatenation operator <tt>++</tt>. Ur enforces that any concatenation happens between records that share no field names. Otherwise, we'd need to resolve field name ambiguity in some predictable way, which would force us to treat <tt>++</tt> as non-commutative, if we are to maintain the nice modularity properties of polymorphism. However, treating <tt>++</tt> as commutative, and treating records as equal up to field permutation in general, are very convenient for type inference and general programmer experience. Thus, we enforce disjointness to keep things simple.<br> +<br> +For a polymorphic function like <tt>project</tt>, the compiler doesn't know which fields a type-level record variable like <tt>ts</tt> contains. To enable self-contained type-checking, we need to declare some constraints about field disjointness. That's exactly the meaning of syntax like <tt>[r1 ~ r2]</tt>, which asserts disjointness of two type-level records. The disjointness clause for <tt>project</tt> asserts that the name <tt>nm</tt> is not used by <tt>ts</tt>. The syntax <tt>[nm]</tt> is shorthand for <tt>[nm = ()]</tt>, which defines a singleton record of kind <tt>{Unit}</tt>, where <tt>Unit</tt> is the degenerate kind inhabited only by the constructor <tt>()</tt>.<br> +<br> +The last piece of this puzzle is the easiest. In the example call to <tt>project</tt>, we see that the only parameters passed are the one explicit constructor parameter <tt>nm</tt> and the value-level parameter <tt>r</tt>. The rest are inferred, and the disjointness proof obligation is discharged automatically. The syntax <tt>#A</tt> denotes the constructor standing for first-class field name <tt>A</tt>, and we pass all constructor parameters to value-level functions within square brackets (which bear no formal relation to the syntax for type-level record literals <tt>[A = c, ..., A = c]</tt>). *)