[Fwd: Re: Variants of a recursive data structure]

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[Fwd: Re: Variants of a recursive data structure]

Conor McBride
Hi folks

Sorry, meant to send this around, not just to Klaus

Conor

Hi Klaus

Deep breath!

Klaus Ostermann wrote:

> Hi all,
>
> I have a problem which is probably not a problem at all for Haskell experts,
> but I am struggling with it nevertheless.
>
> I want to model the following situation. I have ASTs for a language in two
> variatns: A "simple" form and a "labelled" form, e.g.
>
> data SimpleExp = Num Int | Add SimpleExp SimpleExp
>
> data LabelledExp = LNum Int String | LAdd LabelledExp LabelledExp String
>
> I wonder what would be the best way to model this situation without
> repeating the structure of the AST.
>  
A trick we use all the time in the implementation of Epigram, for pretty
much the purpose you suggest, is to abstract over a type constructor
which packs recursive nodes. Thus

 > type Node exp node = node (exp node)
 >   -- Node :: ((* -> *) -> *) -> (* -> *) -> *
 > data Exp node = Num Int | Add (Node Exp node) (Node Exp node)
 >   -- Exp :: (* -> *) -> *

So now, with

 > data Id x = An x

you get

 > type SimpleExp = Node Exp Id
 > type LabelledExp = Node Exp ((,) String)

Being incremental programmers, us Epigram folk also like syntax with holes

 > type UnfinishedExp = Node Exp Maybe

Now we can make a node reshaping gadget like this

 > renode :: ((Exp m -> Exp n) -> Node Exp m -> Node Exp n) ->
 >           Node Exp m -> Node Exp n
 > renode transform me = transform inside me where
 >   inside (Num i)        = Num i
 >   inside (Add me1 me2)  = Add (renode transform me1) (renode
transform me2)

 > unlabel :: LabelledExp -> SimpleExp
 > unlabel = renode (\f (_,x) -> An (f x))

Of course, to see what's going on, you might want something like {-
needs -fglasgow-exts -}

 > instance Show SimpleExp where
 >   show (An (Num i))    = "(Num " ++ show i ++ ")"
 >   show (An (Add x y))  = "(Add " ++ show x ++ " " ++ show y ++ ")"

So you get {- genuine output -}

*Nodes> unlabel ("fred", Add ("jim", Num 1) ("sheila", Num 2))
(Add (Num 1) (Num 2))

Of course, you can also play the same sort of game, making Node
explicitly a fixpoint operator and removingthe recursion from Exp, like
this:

newtype Node exp node = Node (node (exp (Node exp node)))
data Exp exp = Num Int | Add exp exp

but we don't, because it makes mutually defined syntactic categories get
way out of hand.

Third order programming. It's a whole other order.

Enjoy

Conor



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