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Andy Wardley
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Badger::Codecs - modules for encoding and decoding data


    # using class methods
    use Badger::Codecs;
    $encoded = Badger::Codecs->encode( base64 => $original );
    $decoded = Badger::Codecs->decode( base64 => $encoded );

    # creating a single codec object
    $codec   = Badger::Codecs->codec('base64');
    $encoded = $codec->encode($original);
    $decoded = $codec->decode($encoded);

    # creating a codecs collection
    $codecs  = Badger::Codecs->new(
        base   => ['My::Codec', 'Badger::Codec'],
        codecs => {
            # most codec names are grokked automatigally from the 
            # base defined above - this hash is for any exceptions
            wibble  => 'Ferret::Codec::Wibble',
            frusset => 'Stoat::Codec::Frusset',
    # encode/decode via codecs collective
    $encoded = $codecs->encode( wibble => $original );
    $decoded = $codecs->decode( wibble => $encoded );
    # or via a specific codec
    $codec   = $codecs->codec('wibble');
    $encoded = $codec->encode($original);
    $decoded = $codec->decode($encoded);

    # importing a single codec
    use Badger::Codecs 
        codec => 'url';
    # codec() returns a Badger::Codec::URL object
    $encoded = codec->encode($text);
    $decoded = codec->decode($encoded);
    # encode() and decode() are imported subroutines
    $encoded = encode($text);
    $decoded = decode($encoded);

    # import multiple codecs
    use Badger::Codecs
        codecs => 'base64 storable';
    # codec objects
    base64->encode(...);    base64->decode(...);
    storable->encode(...);  storable->decode(...);
    # imported subroutines
    encode_base64(...);     decode_base64(...);
    encode_storable(...);   decode_storable(...);

    # import a codec chain
    use Badger::Codecs
        codec => 'storable+base64';
    # as before, now both codecs are applied

    # multiple codecs with various options
    use Badger::Codecs
        codecs => {
            link  => 'url+html',
            str64 => 'storable+base64',
    # codec objects
    link->encode(...);      link->decode(...);
    str64->encode(...);     str64->decode(...);
    # subroutines
    encode_link(...);       decode_link(...);
    encode_str64(...);      decode_str64(...);

    # accessing codecs via Badger::Class
    use Badger::Class 
        codec => 'base64';
    codec();    encode(...);    decode(...);

    use Badger::Class 
        codecs => 'base64 storable';
    base64();   encode_base64(...);    decode_base64(...);
    storable(); encode_storable(...);  decode_storable(...);


A codec is an object responsible for encoding and decoding data. This module implements a codec manager to locate, load and instantiate codec objects.

Using Codecs

First you need to load the Badger::Codecs module.

    use Badger::Codecs;

It can be used in regular OO style by first creating a Badger::Codecs object and then calling methods on it.

    my $codecs  = Badger::Codecs->new();
    my $codec   = $codecs->codec('url');
    my $encoded = $codec->encode($original);
    my $decoded = $codec->decode($encoded);

You can also call class methods directly.

    my $codec   = Badger::Codecs->codec('url');
    my $encoded = $codec->encode($original);
    my $decoded = $codec->decode($encoded);

Or like this:

    my $encoded = Badger::Codecs->encode(url => $original);
    my $decoded = Badger::Codecs->decode(url => $encoded);

These examples are the equivalent of:

    use Badger::Codec::URL;
    my $codec   = Badger::Codec::URL->new;
    my $encoded = $codec->encode($original);
    my $decoded = $codec->decode($encoded);

Badger::Codecs will do its best to locate and load the correct codec module for you. It defines a module base path (containing Badger::Codec and BadgerX::Codec by default) to which the name of the requested codec is appended in various forms.

It first tries the name exactly as specified. If no corresponding codec module is found then it tries a capitalised version of the name, followed by an upper case version of the name. So if you ask for a foo codec, then you'll get back a Badger::Codec::foo, Badger::Codec::Foo, Badger::Codec::FOO or an error will be thrown if none of these can be found.

NOTE: the above paragaph is incorrect. It now tries the capitalised version first to work around Apple's case-insensitive file system. This is subject to change.

    my $codec = Badger::Codecs->code('url');
        # tries: Badger::Codec + url = Badger::Codec::url   # Nope
        # tries: Badger::Codec + Url = Badger::Codec::Url   # Nope
        # tries: Badger::Codec + URL = Badger::Codec::URL   # Yay!

Chained Codecs

Codecs can be chained together in sequence. Specify the names of the individual codes separated by + characters. Whitespace between the names and + is optional. The codec chain returned (Badger::Codec::Chain) behaves exactly like any other codec. The only difference being that it is apply several codecs in sequence.

    my $codec = Badger::Codecs->codec('storable+base64');
    $encoded = $codec->encode($data);       # encode storable then base64
    $decoded = $codec->decode($encoded);    # decode base64 then storable

Note that the decoding process for a chain happens in reverse order to ensure that a round trip between encode() and decode() returns the original unencoded data.

Import Hooks

The codec and codecs import hooks can be used to load and define codec subroutines into another module.

    package My::Module;
    use Badger::Codecs
        codec => 'base64';

The codec import hook defines a codec() subroutine which returns a reference to a codec object. It also defined encode() and decode() subroutines which are mapped to the codec.

    # using the codec reference
    $encoded = codec->encode($original);
    $decoded = codec->decode($encoded);

    # using the encode/decode subs
    $encoded = encode($original);
    $decoded = decode($encoded);

The codecs import hook allows you to define several codecs at once. A subroutine is generated to reference each codec, along with encoding and decoding subroutines.

    use Badger::Codecs
        codecs => 'base64 storable';

    # codec objects
    $encoded = base64->encode($original);
    $decoded = base64->decode($encoded);
    $encoded = storable->encode($original);
    $decoded = storable->decode($encoded);
    # imported subroutines
    $encoded = encode_base64($original);
    $decoded = decode_base64($encoded);
    $encoded = encode_storable($original);
    $decoded = decode_storable($encoded);

You can define alternate names for codecs by providing a reference to a hash array.

    use Badger::Codecs
        codecs => {
            text => 'base64',
            data => 'storable+base64',
    # codec objects
    $encoded = text->encode($original);
    $decoded = text->decode($encoded);
    $encoded = data->encode($original);
    $decoded = data->decode($encoded);

    # imported subroutines
    $encoded = encode_text($original);
    $decoded = decode_text($encoded);
    $encoded = encode_data($original);
    $decoded = decode_data($encoded);



This subroutine can be used as a shortcut to the codec method.

    use Badger::Codecs 'Codec';
    my $yaml = Codec('YAML');
    print $yaml->encode($some_data);



Constructor method to create a new Badger::Codecs object.

    my $codecs  = Badger::Codecs->new();
    my $encoded = $codecs->encode( url => $source );

See "CONFIGURATION OPTIONS" for details of the configuration options that can be specified.


The base() method can be used to set the base module path. It can be called as an object or class method.

    # object method
    my $codecs = Badger::Codecs->new;
    $codecs->encode( Foo => $data );            # My::Codec::Foo
    # class method
    Badger::Codecs->encode( Foo => $data );     # My::Codec::Foo

Multiple items can be specified as a list of arguments or by reference to a list.

    $codecs->base('Ferret::Codec', 'Stoat::Codec');     
    $codecs->base(['Ferret::Codec', 'Stoat::Codec']);


The codecs() method can be used to add specific codec mappings to the internal codecs lookup table. It can be called as an object method or a class method.

    # object method
        wam => 'Ferret::Codec::Wam', 
        bam => 'Stoat::Codec::Bam',
    my $codec = $codecs->codec('wam');          # Ferret::Codec::Wam
    # class method
        wam => 'Ferret::Codec::Wam', 
        bam => 'Stoat::Codec::Bam',
    my $codec = Badger::Codecs->codec('bam');   # Stoat::Codec::Bam

codec($type, %config)

Creates and returns a Badger::Codec object for the specified $type. Any additional arguments are forwarded to the codec's constructor method.

    my $codec   = Badger::Codecs->codec('storable');
    my $encoded = $codec->encode($original);
    my $decoded = $codec->decode($encoded);

If the named codec cannot be found then an error is thrown.

chain($type, %config)

Creates a new Badger::Codec::Chain object to represent a chain of codecs.

encode($type, $data)

All-in-one method for encoding data via a particular codec.

    # class method
    Badger::Codecs->encode( url => $source );
    # object method
    my $codecs = Badger::Codecs->new();
    $codecs->encode( url => $source );

decode($type, $data)

All-in-one method for decoding data via a particular codec.

    # class method
    Badger::Codecs->decode( url => $encoded );
    # object method
    my $codecs = Badger::Codecs->new();
    $codecs->decode( url => $encoded );


Loads a single codec identified by $name and exports the codec, encode and decode functions into the $package namespace.

    package Your::Module;
    use Badger::Codecs;
    Badger::Codecs->export_code('Your::Module', 'base64');
    # base64() returns the codec
    # encode() and decode() are shortcuts

An $alias can be provided which will be used instead of codec and appended to the names of the encode and decode functions.

    package Your::Module;
    use Badger::Codecs;
    Badger::Codecs->export_codec('Your::Module', 'base64', 'munger');
    # munged() returns the codec
    # encode_munger() and decode_munger() are shortcuts


Loads and exports multiple codecs into $package. The codec $names can be specified as a a string of whitespace delimited codec names, a reference to a list of codec names, or a reference to a hash array mapping codec names to aliases (see export_codec()).

    Badger::Codecs->export_codecs('Your::Module', 'base64 storable');
    Badger::Codecs->export_codecs('Your::Module', ['base64', 'storable']);
    Badger::Codecs->export_codecs('Your::Module', {
        base64   => 'alias_for_base64',
        storable => 'alias_for_storage',


Loads a codec module identified by the $name argument. Returns the name of the module implementing the codec.

    print Badger::Codecs->load('base64');       # Badger::Codec::Base64


This is an internal method called by the base class Badger::Factory module when a codec is located and loaded.


This is an internal method called by the base class Badger::Factory module when a cached codec object is found.


This is an internal method called by the base class Badger::Factory module to return a final result for the requested code. This method caches the codec object if no configuration arguments were provided.



This option can be used to specify the name(s) of one or more modules which define a search path for codec modules. The default path contains Badger::Codec and BadgerX::Codec.

    my $codecs = Badger::Codecs->new( 
        path => 'My::Codec' 
    my $codec = $codecs->codec('Foo');      # My::Codec::Foo

Multiple paths can be specified using a reference to a list.

    my $codecs = Badger::Codecs->new( 
        path => ['My::Codec', 'Badger::Codec'],
    my $codec = $codecs->codec('Bar');      # either My::Codec::Bar
                                            # or Badger::Codec::Bar


The codecs configuration option can be used to define specific codec mappings to bypass the automagical name grokking mechanism.

    my $codecs = Badger::Codecs->new( 
        codecs => {
            foo => 'Ferret::Codec::Foo', 
            bar => 'Stoat::Codec::Bar',
    my $codec = $codecs->codec('foo');      # Ferret::Codec::Foo


Andy Wardley http://wardley.org/


Copyright (C) 2005-2009 Andy Wardley. All rights reserved.

This module is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.