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Re: Naming conventions
Re: Naming conventions
Wed, 8 Jul 2020 21:16:11 +0200
Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; WOW64; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/68.9.0
On 07.07.2020 13:05, Simen Endsjø wrote:
> - <symbol> :: ? As a macro parameter
I personally do this with pattern variables in macros, but I don't know
if anyone else does. I'd advocate for it to become the norm though!
I find it very intuitive because pattern variables are placeholders for
something else, and the <blah> notation is often used for placeholders.
(This probably originates from BNF syntax.)
Consider the following example.
In Scheme it's customary to return #f (the false Boolean) to mean "null"
or "no result." And it's a common pattern in code to try to get a value
from somewhere, then only do a certain thing if you got a result.
For that reason let's say I want to define an "in-case" macro, to be
used like this:
(in-case warnings (check-warnings input)
(display "Input is valid, but please note these warnings:\n")
(for-each (lambda (w) (display w) (newline)) warnings))
I.e., the result of (check-warnings input) is bound to the 'warnings'
variable, and the code is executed if it's not #f.
I would define that macro like this:
((_ <variable> <expression> <body> <body*> ...)
(let ((<variable> <expression>))
<body> <body*> ...)))))
I personally find that significantly easier to read than this:
((_ variable expression body body* ...)
(let ((variable expression))
body body* ...)))))
In the latter variant, it's much less obvious that we have a piece of
"template" code with symbols or expressions to be inserted in certain
Especially the part with (let ((variable expression)) ...) is IMO much
clearer when using the <symbol> notation, because it makes it clear that
we're not binding a new variable literally called "variable" but rather
that, when the macro is expanded, it will bind a variable whose actual
name is provided by the user of the macro.
Maybe the difference isn't much in such a small example, but if the body
of the macro was bigger, it might help quite a bit.
I think the notation also has the benefit of making it more obvious for
newbies what exactly syntax-rules does and how it works. In particular,
it might help to clarify that the second part of 'syntax-rules' is a
template, where snippets given by the macro user are inserted into
certain slots in the template.