[Haskell-cafe] Comparing functions
allbery.b at gmail.com
Thu Jul 11 19:50:06 CEST 2013
On Thu, Jul 11, 2013 at 1:33 PM, Vlatko Basic <vlatko.basic at gmail.com>wrote:
> data CmpFunction a = CF (a -> a -> Bool)
> that contains comparing functions, like ==, <, > ..., and I'm trying to
> declare the Show instance for it like this
> instance Show (CmpFunction a) where
> show (CF (==)) = "== " -- no good
> show f = case f of -- no good also
> CBF (==) -> "=="
> _ -> "Other"
> but compiler complains for both with
> This binding for `==' shadows the existing binding
> imported from `Prelude' at src/Main.hs:6:8-11
> (and originally defined in `ghc-prim:GHC.Classes')
The problem here isn't quite what you think it is; (==) is not a
constructor, therefore it is a *variable*. It's exactly the same problem as
a = 5
foo a = 3 -- this does NOT compare with the previous value of "a"; it's
identical to the next line!
foo x = x
Just as with the above, the normal way to do it would be to use a guard...
but functions don't have an Eq instance, and *can't* have one. How do you
meaningfully compare them? And for a typeclass function like (==), do you
want (==) instantiated for Int to compare equal to (==) instantiated for
Integer? Does a native-compiled function compare equal to an interpreted
function? Remember referential transparency; the concept of comparing
pointers used in some languages is not applicable to Haskell.
brandon s allbery kf8nh sine nomine associates
allbery.b at gmail.com ballbery at sinenomine.net
unix, openafs, kerberos, infrastructure, xmonad http://sinenomine.net
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
More information about the Haskell-Cafe