++ed by:
ZMUGHAL CINDY

2 PAUSE users
2 non-PAUSE users.

Cindy Wang (CindyLinz)

NAME

DestructAssign - Destructuring assignment

SYNOPSIS

  use DestructAssign qw(des des_alias);

  my($w, $x, $y, $z);
  our($X, $Y, $Z);
  des [$x, [undef, {y => $y}, undef, $w], $z] = [2, [25, {x => 'x', y => 3}, 26, 1], 4];
  # got ($w, $x, $y, $z) = (1, 2, 3, 4)
  # (use undef as the skipping placeholder)

  # put skip index in the list pattern
  des [3 => $w, $x, -2 => $y, $z] = [1..9];
  # got ($w, $x, $y, $z) = (4, 5, 8, 9)

  # use names of the variables in a hash pattern as keys when not assigned
  # use previously used key for a sub-pattern when not assigned
  des {$x, $A::B, $Y, [$a, $b]} = {x => 1, Y => [9, 8], B => 3};
  # got ($x, $Y, $A::B, $a, $b) = (1, [9,8], 3, 9, 8);

  # use hash pattern to match against an array reference
  # So we can write:
  sub f {
    des {my($score, $name, $detail), {my($math, $english)}} = \@_;
    ...
  }
  f(
    name => 'Cindy',
    score => 95,
    detail => {math => 90, english => 30, bios => 60},
  );


  # put @array or @hash in the list pattern to eat all the remaining element
  my(@array, %hash);
  des [3 => @array, -4 => %hash] = [1..8];
  # got @array = (4..8), %hash = (5 => 6, 7 => 8)

  # put the same index or hash key
  #  when you need to capture different granularity on the same data structure
  #  (notice that you can use duplicated keys in the hash pattern)
  des {x => $x, x => [$y, $z]} = {x => [1, 2]};
  # got $x = [1,2], $y = 1, $z = 2

  # use the alias semantics
  my $data = [1, 2, 3];
  des_alias [undef, $x] = $data;
  $x = 20;
  # got $data = [1, 20, 3]

  {
    # mixed with lexical variable introduction
    des [my($i, $j), { k => my $k }] = [1, 2, {k => 3}];
    # got my($i, $j, $k) = (1, 2, 3)
  }

DESCRIPTION

This mod provides destructuring assignment for Perl. You can capture (by value) or bind (by alias) variables into part of a potentially large and complex data structure.

I expect it to bring following benefits:

provide named parameters more easily

Named parameters are good when the number of parameters is large (more than 4). With this mod, you can do:

  sub f {
    des {my($id, $title, $x, $y, $width, $height)} = \@_;
    # The order is not important.
    ...
  }

  f(
    id => 1,
    title => 'Untitled',
    x => 10, y => 10,
    width => 200, height => 150,
  );
enhance the readability by pointing out all the elements you might touch at the begining of each subroutine

It's a good habit to name parameters instead of access @_ directly (except you want to modify caller's arguments). This mod extend the ability to name parameters in the deep structure. You can explicitly list all the elements you might touch in the subroutine.

  sub f {
    des [my $x, { id => my $id, amount => my $amount }] = \@_;
    # or use des_alias, if you need to modify the passed parameters.
    des_alias [my $x, { id => my $id, amount => my $amount }] = \@_;
  }

Even if you want to modify caller's arguments, you can still use "des_alias" to name them.

  sub add {
    des_alias [my($a, $b, $sum)] = \@_;
    $sum = $a + $b;
  }

  my($a, $b, $c) = (1, 2, 0);
  add($a, $b, $c);
  # $c = 3
enhance the performance by avoiding repeatedly digging into complex data structures

Suppose we have data structures like this:

  my $player1 = {
    id => 25,
    hp => 8100,
    armor => {
      body => {
        id => 21,
        name => 'iron suit',
        protect => 10,
        durability => 100,
      },
      hand => {
        id => 29,
        name => 'iron sword',
        attack => 15,
        durability => 100,
      },
    },
  };
  my $player2 = ...;

Instead of

  while( $player1->{hp}>0 && $player2->{hp}>0 ) {
    my $hit1 =
        ($player1->{armor}{hand}{durability} && $player1->{armor}{hand}{attack}) -
        ($player2->{armor}{body}{durability} && $player2->{armor}{body}{protect});
    my $hit2 =
        ($player2->{armor}{hand}{durability} && $player2->{armor}{hand}{attack}) -
        ($player1->{armor}{body}{durability} && $player1->{armor}{body}{protect});
    $hit1 = 1 if( $hit1 <= 0 );
    $hit2 = 1 if( $hit2 <= 0 );

    $player1->{hp} -= $hit2;
    $player2->{hp} -= $hit1;

    --$player1->{armor}{hand}{durability} if( $player1->{armor}{hand}{durability} );
    --$player1->{armor}{body}{durability} if( $player1->{armor}{body}{durability} );
    --$player2->{armor}{hand}{durability} if( $player2->{armor}{hand}{durability} );
    --$player2->{armor}{body}{durability} if( $player2->{armor}{body}{durability} );
  }

We could write

  des_alias [
    {
      hp => my $hp1,
      armor => {
        body => {
          protect => my $protect1,
          durability => my $body_dura1,
        },
        hand => {
          attack => my $attack1,
          durability => my $hand_dura1,
        },
      }
    },
    {
      hp => my $hp2,
      armor => {
        body => {
          protect => my $protect2,
          durability => my $body_dura2,
        },
        hand => {
          attack => my $attack2,
          durability => my $hand_dura2,
        },
      }
    },
  ] = [$player1, $player2];

  while( hp1>0 && hp2>0 ) {
    my $hit1 = ($hand_dura1 && $attack1) - ($body_dura2 && $protect2);
    my $hit2 = ($hand_dura2 && $attack2) - ($body_dura1 && $protect1);
    $hit1 = 1 if( $hit1 <= 0 );
    $hit2 = 1 if( $hit2 <= 0 );

    $hp1 -= $hit2;
    $hp2 -= $hit1;

    --$hand_dura1 if( $hand_dura1 );
    --$body_dura1 if( $body_dura1 );
    --$hand_dura2 if( $hand_dura2 );
    --$body_dura2 if( $body_dura2 );
  }

This mod is tested in Perl 5.8.9, 5.10.1, 5.12.5, 5.14.4, 5.16.3, 5.18.2, 5.20.0, 5.21.6, 5.21.7 on x86_64.

EXPORT

None by default.

des pattern = $value

The value semantics of destructuring assignment.

The captured data elements are copied out to the variables.

des_alias pattern = $value

The alias semantics of destructuring assignment

The captured data elements are bound to the variables. After the binding, write to or read from the variables will affect the bound data.

Be careful that once you bind a variable to a data element, there's no easy way to unbind it. It's recommended to use brand new lexical variables or localized variables to do it.

Like this..

  # some variables outside..
  my $a = 123;
  our $y = 456;

  my $data = [1, 2]; # the target data
  {
      des_alias [my $a, local $y] = $data;
      $a = 5; $y = 6;
      # $data = [5, 6];
  }
  # back to original, unbound $a and $y.
  $a = 7;
  $y = 8;
  # $data = [5, 6]; # the $data will not be changed.

PATTERN

The only argument to des or des_alias should be an anonymous list [..] or anonymous hash {..}.

The elements of them could be

anonymous list [..]

To match a list reference

anonymous hash {..}

To match a hash reference or an array reference

scalar variable $xx

To capture the data element

array variable @xx

This can be used only in an anonymous list, not hash.

To capture all the remaining data element of the current array from current offset.

When using in alias semantics, each element of the array variable will be bound to data element individually.

hash variable %xx

This can be used only in an anonymous list, not hash.

To capture all the remaining data element of the current array from current offset.

When using in alias semantics, only the values of the hash variable will be bound to data element, individually.

constant undef

When using in an anonymous list, it is used as a skipping placeholder.

When using in an anonymous hash, it is used to set the next capturing key to ''.

constant string or number

When using in an anonymous list, we'll take it as a numer to set the next capturing offset.

When using in an anonymous hash, we'll take it as a string to set the next capturing key.

SEE ALSO

This mod's github https://github.com/CindyLinz/Perl-DestructAssign. It's welcome to discuss with me when you encounter bugs, or if you think that some patterns are also useful but the mod didn't provide them yet.

I also found a similar mod on github. (no cpan page) https://github.com/hirokidaichi/p5-Data-Destructuring-Assignment It's implemented in pure Perl with tied structures. Because it's pure Perl, we need to pass references directly on the left hand side. It can't take advantage on hash pattern with duplicated keys. It didn't provide alias semantics either, though it could be added easily if needed.

AUTHOR

Cindy Wang (CindyLinz) <cindy@cpan.org>

CONTRIBUTOR

Father Chrysostomos <sprout@cpan.org>

COPYRIGHT AND LICENSE

Copyright (C) 2014 by Cindy Wang (CindyLinz)

This library is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself, either Perl version 5.18.2 or, at your option, any later version of Perl 5 you may have available.