Curtis "Ovid" Poe > Array-AsHash-0.32 > Array::AsHash

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Module Version: 0.32   Source  

NAME ^

Array::AsHash - Treat arrays as a hashes, even if you need references for keys.

VERSION ^

Version 0.32

SYNOPSIS ^

    use Array::AsHash;

    my $array = Array::AsHash->new({
        array => \@array,
        clone => 1, # optional
    });
   
    while (my ($key, $value) = $array->each) {
        # sorted
        ...
    }

    my $value = $array->get($key);
    $array->put($key, $value);
    
    if ( $array->exists($key) ) {
        ...
    }

    $array->delete($key);

DESCRIPTION ^

Sometimes we have an array that we need to treat as a hash. We need the data ordered, but we don't use an ordered hash because it's already an array. Or it's just quick 'n easy to run over array elements two at a time. This module allows you to use the array as a hash but also mostly still use it as an array, too.

Because we directly use the reference you pass to the constructor, you may wish to copy your data if you do not want it altered (the data are not altered except through the publicly available methods of this class).

EXPORT ^

None.

CONSTRUCTOR ^

new

 my $array = Array::AsHash->new;
 # or
 my $array = Array::AsHash->new( { array => \@array } );

Returns a new Array::AsHash object. If an array is passed to new, it must contain an even number of elements. This array will be treated as a set of key/value pairs:

 my @array = qw/foo bar one 1/;
 my $array = Array::AsHash->new({array => \@array});
 print $array->get('foo'); # prints 'bar'

Note that the array is stored internally and changes to the Array::AsHash object will change the array that was passed to the constructor as an argument. If you do not wish this behavior, clone the array beforehand or ask the constructor to clone it for you.

 my $array = Array::AsHash->new(
    {
        array  => \@array,
        clone  => 1,
    }
 );

Internally, we use the Clone module to clone the array. This will not always work if you are attempting to clone objects (inside-out objects are particularly difficult to clone). If you encounter this, you will need to clone the array yourself. Most of the time, however, it should work.

Of course, you can simply create an empty object and it will still work.

 my $array = Array::AsHash->new;
 $array->put('foo', 'bar');

You may also specify strict mode in the constructor.

 my @array = qw/foo bar one 1/;
 my $array = Array::AsHash->new(
    {
        array  => \@array,
        strict => 1,
    }
 );
 print $array->get('foo'); # prints 'bar'
 print $array->get('oen'); # croaks

If you specify "strict" mode, the following methods will croak if they attempt to access a non-existent key:

In strict mode, instead of put, you will want to use the add method to add new keys to the array.

HASH-LIKE METHODS ^

The following methods allow one to treat an Array::AsHash object more-or-less like a hash.

keys

  my @keys = $array->keys;

Returns the "keys" of the array. Returns an array reference in scalar context.

values

  my @values = $array->values;

Returns the "values" of the array. Returns an array reference in scalar context.

delete

 my @values = $array->delete(@keys);

Deletes the given @keys from the array. Returns the values of the deleted keys. In scalar context, returns an array reference of the keys.

As a "common-case" optimization, if only one key is requested for deletion, deletion in scalar context will result in the one value (if any) being returned instead of an array reference.

 my $deleted = $array->delete($key); # returns the value for $key
 my $deleted = $array->delete($key1, $key2); # returns an array reference

Non-existing keys will be silently ignored unless you are in "strict" mode in which case non-existent keys are fatal.

clear

  $array->clear;

Clears all of the values from the array.

each

 while ( my ($key, $value) = $array->each ) {
    # iterate over array like a hash
 }

Lazily returns keys and values, in order, until no more are left. Every time each() is called, will automatically increment to the next key value pair. If no more key/value pairs are left, will reset itself to the first key/value pair.

If called in scalar context, returns an Array::AsHash::Iterator which behaves the same way (except that the iterator will not return another iterator if called in scalar context).

 my $each = $array->each;
 while ( my ($key, $value) = $each->next ) {
    # iterate over array like a hash
 }

See the Array::AsHash::Iterator object for available methods.

As with a regular hash, if you do not iterate over all of the data, the internal pointer will be pointing at the next key/value pair to be returned. If you need to restart from the beginning, call the reset_each method.

kv

 while ( my ($key, $value) = $array->kv ) {
    # iterate over array like a hash
 }

kv is a synonym for each.

first

 if ($array->first) { ... }

Returns true if we are iterating over the array with each() and we are on the first iteration.

last

 if ($array->last) { ... }

Returns true if we are iterating over the array with each() and we are on the last iteration.

reset_each

 $array->reset_each;

Resets the each iterator to point to the beginning of the array.

exists

 if ($array->exists($thing)) { ... }

Returns true if the given $thing exists in the array as a key.

get

 my $value = $array->get($key);

Returns the value associated with a given key, if any. If a single key is passed and the key does not exist, returns an empty list. This means that the following can work correctly:

 if (my @value = $array->get('no_such_key')) { ... }

If passed more than one key, returns a list of values associated with those keys with undef used for any key whose value does not exist. That means the following will probably not work as expected:

 if (my @value = $array->get('no_such_key1', 'no_such_key2') { ... }

If using a strict hash, get will croak if it encounters a non-existent key.

put

 $array->put($key, $value);

Sets the value for a given $key. If the key does not already exist, this pushes two elements onto the end of the array.

Also accepts an even-sized list of key/value pairs:

 $array->put(@kv_pairs);

If using a strict hash, put will croak if it encounters a non-existent key. You will have to use the add method to add new keys.

add

 $array->add($key, $value);

add behaves exactly like put except it can only be used for adding keys. Any attempt to add an existing key will croak regardless of whether you are in strict mode or not.

get_pairs

 my $array = Array::AsHash->new({array => [qw/foo bar one 1 two 2/]});
 my @pairs = $array->get_pairs(qw/foo two/); # @pairs = (foo => 'bar', two => 2);
 my $pairs = $array->get_pairs(qw/xxx two/); # $pairs = [ two => 2 ];

get_pairs returns an even-size list of key/value pairs. It silently discards non-existent keys. In scalar context it returns an array reference.

This method is useful for reordering an array.

 my $array  = Array::AsHash->new({array => [qw/foo bar two 2 one 1/]});
 my @pairs  = $array->get_pairs(sort $array->keys);
 my $sorted = Array::AsHash->new({array => \@pairs});

If using a strict hash, get_pairs will croak if it encounters a non-existent key.

default

 $array->default(@kv_pairs);

Given an even-sized list of key/value pairs, each key which does not already exist in the array will be set to the corresponding value. Keys which already exist will be silently ignored, even in strict mode.

rename

 $array->rename($old_key, $new_key);
 $array->rename(@list_of_old_and_new_keys);

Rename $old_key to $new_key. Will croak if $old_key does not exist, $new_key already exists or $new_key is undefined.

Can take an even-sized list of old and new keys.

hcount

 my $pair_count = $array->hcount;

Returns the number of key/value pairs in the array.

hindex

 my $index = $array->hindex('foo');

Returns the hash index of a given key, if the keys exists. The hash index is the array index divided by 2. In other words, it's the index of the key/value pair.

ARRAY-LIKE METHODS ^

The following methods allow one to treat a Array::AsHash object more-or-less like an array.

shift

 my ($key, $value) = $array->shift;

Removes the first key/value pair, if any, from the array and returns it. Returns an array reference in scalar context.

pop

 my ($key, $value) = $array->pop;

Removes the last key/value pair, if any, from the array and returns it. Returns an array reference in scalar context.

unshift

 $array->unshift(@kv_pairs);

Takes an even-sized list of key/value pairs and attempts to unshift them onto the front of the array. Will croak if any of the keys already exists.

push

 $array->push(@kv_pairs);

Takes an even-sized list of key/value pairs and attempts to push them onto the end of the array. Will croak if any of the keys already exists.

insert_before

 $array->insert_before($key, @kv_pairs);

Similar to splice(), this method takes a given $key and attempts to insert an even-sized list of key/value pairs before the given key. Will croak if $key does not exist or if @kv_pairs is not an even-sized list.

 $array->insert_before($key, this => 'that', one => 1);

insert_after

 $array->insert_after($key, @kv_pairs);

This method takes a given $key and attempts to insert an even-sized list of key/value pairs after the given key. Will croak if $key does not exist or if @kv_pairs is not an even-sized list.

 $array->insert_after($key, this => 'that', one => 1);

key_at

 my $key  = $array->key_at($index);
 my @keys = $array->key_at(@indices);

This method takes a given index and returns the key for that index. If passed a list of indices, returns all keys for those indices, just like an array slice. If passed a single value, always returns a scalar. Otherwise, returns an array ref in scalar context.

value_at

 my $value  = $array->value_at($index);
 my @values = $array->value_at(@indices);

This method takes a given index and returns the value for that index. If passed a list of indices, returns all values for those indices, just like an array slice. If passed a single value, always returns a scalar. Otherwise, returns an array ref in scalar context.

acount

 my $count = $array->acount;

Returns the number of elements in the array.

aindex

 my $count = $array->aindex('foo');

Returns the array index of a given key, if the keys exists.

MISCELLANEOUS METHODS ^

strict

 if ($array->strict) {
    ...
 }
 $array->strict(0); # turn off strict mode

Getter/setter for validating strict mode. If no arguments are passed, returns a boolean value indicating whether or not strict mode has been enabled for this array.

If an argument is passed, sets strict mode for the array to the boolean value of the argument.

get_array

 my @array = $array->get_array;

Returns the array in the object. Returns an array reference in scalar context. Note that altering the returned array can affect the internal state of the Array::AsHash object and will probably break it. You should usually only get the underlying array as the last action before disposing of the object. Otherwise, attempt to clone the array with the clone method and use that array.

 my @array = $array->clone->get_array;

clone

 my $array2 = $array->clone;

Attempts to clone (deep copy) and return a new object. This may fail if the array contains objects which Clone cannot handle.

OVERLOADING ^

The boolean value of the object has been overloaded. An empty array object will report false in boolean context:

 my $array = Array::AsHash->new;
 if ($array) {
   # never gets here
 }

The string value of the object has been overloaded to ease debugging. When printing the reference, the output will be in the following format:

 key1
         value1
 key2
         value2
 key3
         value3

This is a bit unusual but since this object is neither an array nor a hash, a somewhat unusual format has been chosen.

CAVEATS ^

Internally we keep the array an array. This does mean that things might get a bit slow if you have a large array, but it also means that you can use references (including objects) as "keys". For the general case of fetching and storing items you'll find the operations are O(1). Behaviors which can affect the entire array are often O(N).

We achieve O(1) speed for most operations by internally keeping a hash of key indices. This means that for common use, it's pretty fast. If you're writing to the array a lot, it could be a bit slower for large arrays. You've been warned.

WHY NOT A TIED HASH? ^

You may very well find that a tied hash fits your purposes better and there's certainly nothing wrong with them. Personally, I do not use tied variables unless absolutely necessary because ties are frequently buggy, they tend to be slow and they take a perfectly ordinary variable and make it hard to maintain. Return a tied variable and some poor maintenance programmer is just going to see a hash and they'll get awfully confused when their code isn't doing quite what they expect.

Of course, this module provides a richer interface than a tied hash would, but that's just another benefit of using a proper class instead of a tie.

AUTHOR ^

Curtis "Ovid" Poe, <ovid@cpan.org>

BUGS ^

Please report any bugs or feature requests to bug-array-ashash@rt.cpan.org, or through the web interface at http://rt.cpan.org/NoAuth/ReportBug.html?Queue=Array-AsHash. I will be notified, and then you'll automatically be notified of progress on your bug as I make changes.

SEE ALSO ^

Clone, Tie::IxHash.

COPYRIGHT & LICENSE ^

Copyright 2005 Curtis "Ovid" Poe, all rights reserved.

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.

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