LavishScript:Object References and Persistence

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The following information applies to LavishScript in Inner Space 1.12, builds 5929 and later.

LavishScript allows certain types of objects to be referenced by a weakref, thus allowing various objects to be passed by reference to Functions (including Members, Methods, and Atoms).

Note that weakref was previously called persistentref.

Specifically, to be referenced by a weakref, object types must be defined as supporting persistent behavior. The LavishScript engine assumes non-persistent objects have the shortest possible lifetime, whereas when a persistent object is destroyed, all active references are invalidated by the object itself.

Whether an object type supports persistence can be determined by checking the value of type.PersistentClass (e.g. ${Type[int].PersistentClass}), where no result (NULL) means no persistence. Many LavishScript types support persistence, including:

Using a weakref object

weakref supports both immediate and late initialization

variable weakref MyRef = SomeOtherObject
variable weakref MyRef

After weakref initialization, as long as the referenced object exists it can be accessed directly through MyRef as if it were the original object. Whether the reference is still valid or not can be determined by checking the value of weakref.Reference, where no result (NULL) means no reference. (e.g. ${MyRef.Reference(exists)})

Passing by reference

Because weakref supports immediate initialization, a weakref can be used as a parameter to any Function (including Members, Methods, and Atoms). Additionally, a weakref can be returned from an explicitly-defined Member.

objectdef someObject 
  member:weakref GetItself(weakref PassedByReference)
     return PassedByReference

  member:int GetSize(weakref PassedByReference)
     return ${PassedByReference.Size}

  member:int GetElement(weakref PassedByReference, string element_key)
     return ${PassedByReference["${element_key.Escape}"]}

function main()
  variable collection:int MyCollection
  variable someObject SomeObject 

  echo Size of MyCollection (method 1): ${SomeObject.GetItself[MyCollection].Size} -- expected '1'
  echo Size of MyCollection (method 2): ${SomeObject.GetSize[MyCollection]} -- expected '1'
  echo Value of MyCollection[one]: ${SomeObject.GetElement[MyCollection,one]} -- expected '2'