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Existential type

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(Examples from the Generalised algebraic datatype page and from the Essential Haskell Compiler Project)
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__TOC__
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== Dynamic dispatch mechanism of OOP ==
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'''Existential types''' in conjunction with type classes can be used to emulate the dynamic dispatch mechanism of object oriented programming languages. To illustrate this concept I show how a classic example from object oriented programming can be encoded in Haskell.
 
'''Existential types''' in conjunction with type classes can be used to emulate the dynamic dispatch mechanism of object oriented programming languages. To illustrate this concept I show how a classic example from object oriented programming can be encoded in Haskell.
   
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--
 
--
-- Smart constructors
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-- Smart constructor
 
--
 
--
 
 
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shapes = [circle 2.4, rectangle 3.1 4.4, square 2.1]
 
shapes = [circle 2.4, rectangle 3.1 4.4, square 2.1]
 
</haskell>
 
</haskell>
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See also the concept of [[Smart constructor]].
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== [[Generalised algebraic datatype]] ==
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The type of the parser for [[Generalised algebraic datatype#Motivating example|this GADT]] is a good example to enlighten what the concept of existential type means.
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== Examples from the Essential Haskell Compiler Project ==
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See the documentations of the Essential Haskell Compiler project (at the ''Version 4'' part):
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* [http://www.cs.uu.nl/wiki/pub/Ehc/WebHome/20050107-eh-intro.pdf Essential Haskell Compiler overview]
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* [http://www.cs.uu.nl/wiki/Ehc/Examples#EH_4_forall_and_exists_everywher Examples]
   
 
[[Category:Idioms]]
 
[[Category:Idioms]]

Revision as of 11:39, 2 May 2006

Contents


1 Dynamic dispatch mechanism of OOP

Existential types in conjunction with type classes can be used to emulate the dynamic dispatch mechanism of object oriented programming languages. To illustrate this concept I show how a classic example from object oriented programming can be encoded in Haskell.

 class Shape_ a where
   perimeter :: a -> Double
   area      :: a -> Double
 
 data Shape = forall a. Shape_ a => Shape a
 
 type Radius = Double
 type Side   = Double
 
 data Circle    = Circle    Radius
 data Rectangle = Rectangle Side Side
 data Square    = Square    Side
 
 
 instance Shape_ Circle where
   perimeter (Circle r) = 2 * pi * r
   area      (Circle r) = pi * r * r
 
 instance Shape_ Rectangle where
   perimeter (Rectangle x y) = 2*(x + y)
   area      (Rectangle x y) = x * y
 
 instance Shape_ Square where
   perimeter (Square s) = 4*s
   area      (Square s) = s*s
 
 instance Shape_ Shape where
   perimeter (Shape shape) = perimeter shape
   area      (Shape shape) = area      shape
 
 
 --
 -- Smart constructor
 --
 
 circle :: Radius -> Shape
 circle r = Shape (Circle r)
 
 rectangle :: Side -> Side -> Shape
 rectangle x y = Shape (Rectangle x y)
 
 square :: Side -> Shape
 square s = Shape (Square s)
 
 shapes :: [Shape]
 shapes = [circle 2.4, rectangle 3.1 4.4, square 2.1]

See also the concept of Smart constructor.

2 Generalised algebraic datatype

The type of the parser for this GADT is a good example to enlighten what the concept of existential type means.

3 Examples from the Essential Haskell Compiler Project

See the documentations of the Essential Haskell Compiler project (at the Version 4 part):