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Dfn

963 bytes added, 12:27, 2 November 2020
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A '''dfn''' (contraction of '''direct function''' or '''dynamic function''', pronounced "dee fun") is an alternative way to define a [[function]] and [[operator]], invented by [[John Scholes]]. A dfn operator can also be called a '''dop''' (pronounced "dee op").
John Scholes was responsible for numerous presentations and publications on and about dfns, and until his passing he maintained the [https://[dfns.dyalog.com workspace]], a collection of dfns website]examples.
As of 2020, dfns are fully implemented in [[Dyalog APL]], [[NARS2000]], [[ngn/apl]], [[dzaima/APL]], and partially in [[GNU APL]], although not all dialects implement [[wikipedia:lexical scoping|lexical scoping]], in contrast to the dynamic scoping of [[tradfn]]s. In other words, a dfn cannot "see" locals of its caller, but can see locals of its definer.
3 {⍵*÷⍺} 27 ⍝ ⍺th root
3
⍝ Multiline dfn with optional left parameterand conditional result
root←{
⍺←2 ⍝ square root by default
⍵*÷⍺ ⍝ result } ⍝ Dfn with conditional result root←{ ⍺←2 ⍝ square root by default ⍺=0:0 ⍝ return zero if zeroth root
⍵*÷⍺ ⍝ result
}</source>
 
=== Error-guards ===
Dyalog APL dfns support error-guards for processing errors by error codes.<ref>[https://help.dyalog.com/latest/#Language/Defined%20Functions%20and%20Operators/DynamicFunctions/Error%20Guards.htm Error Guards] – Dyalog APL.</ref>
 
In the following example, there are two error-guards for the error code 11 (DOMAIN ERROR):<ref>[https://help.dyalog.com/latest/#Language/Errors/APL%20Errors.htm#APLErrors APL Error Messages and Codes] – Dyalog APL.</ref>
<source lang=apl>
Gravity←{
G←6.6743E¯11 ⍝ gravitational constant
11::'N/A' ⍝ second DOMAIN ERROR: return 'N/A'
11::∇⍎¨⍵ ⍝ first DOMAIN ERROR: maybe the argument is a vector of strings?
G×⍵[1]×⍵[2]÷⍵[3]*2 ⍝ the argument is a vector of numbers
}
 
⍝ Calculate gravity force between the Earth and the Sun
Gravity '1.99e30' '5.97e24' '1.50e11'
3.524119391E22
Gravity 1.99e30 5.97e24 1.50e11
3.524119391E22
Gravity 1.99e30 5.97e24 0 ⍝ trigger division by zero
N/A
</source>
== External links ==
* [https://help.dyalog.com/latest/#Language/Defined%20Functions%20and%20Operators/DynamicFunctions/Dynamic%20Functions%20and%20Operators.htm Dyalog]
* [https://www.gnu.org/software/apl/apl.html#Section-3_002e7 GNU APL]
 
== References ==
<references/>
{{APL syntax}}[[Category:Kinds of functions]][[Category:Defining functions]]

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