Previous Up Next

5.8  Type conversion between Tcl and ECLiPSe

EXDR (ECLiPSe External Data Representation, see also chapter 9) is a data encoding that allows to represent a significant subset of the ECLiPSe data types. The following Tcl primitives are provided to handle EXDR-format:
ec_write_exdr channel data ?format?

write an EXDR-term onto the given channel. The term is constructed using the data argument and the additional type information provided in the format argument. If no format is specified, it defaults to S (string).

ec_read_exdr channel

reads an EXDR-term from the given channel and returns it as a Tcl data structure, according to its type. Note that, since Tcl does not have a strong type system, some typing information can get lost in this process (e.g. string vs. atom).

ec_tcl2exdr data ?format?

This is the low-level primitive to encode the given data and type information in format to an EXDR-string which is suitable for sending over communication links to ECLiPSe or other agents which can decode EXDR-format. If no format is specified, it defaults to S (string).

ec_exdr2tcl exdr_string

This is the low-level primitive to decode an EXDR-string. It returns a Tcl data structure, according to the type information encoded in the EXDR-string. Note that, since Tcl does not have a strong type system, some typing information can get lost in this process (e.g. string vs. atom).
Since Tcl is an untyped language, all commands which create EXDR terms accept, in addition to the data, an optional format argument which allows all EXDR data types to be specified. The syntax is as follows:
To create EXDR type use <format> data required
String S string (binary)
String U string (utf8)
Integer I integer
Double D double
List [<formats>] fixed length list
List [<formats] list
Struct (<formats>) fixed list, first elem functor name
Struct (<formats>*) list, first elem functor name
Anonymous Variable _ string "_"
Here are some examples that show which Tcl data/format pair corresponds to which ECLiPSe term (the curly brackets are just Tcl quotes and not part of the format string):
Tcl data        Tcl format      Eclipse term

hello           S               "hello"
hello           ()              hello
123             S               "123"
123             I               123
123             D               123.0
123             ()              '123'
{a 3 4.5}       {[SID]}         ["a", 3, 4.5]
{a 3 4.5}       S               "a 3 4.5"
{1 2 3 4}       {[I*]}          [1, 2, 3, 4]
{f 1 2 3}       {(I*)}          f(1,2,3)
{is _ {- 1 2}}  {(_(II))}       _ is 1-2

Previous Up Next