slot {methods}R Documentation

The Slots in an Object from a Formal Class

Description

These functions return or set information about the individual slots in an object.

Usage

object@name
object@name <- value

slot(object, name)
slot(object, name, check = TRUE) <- value
.hasSlot(object, name)

slotNames(x)
getSlots(x)

Arguments

object

An object from a formally defined class.

name

The name of the slot. The operator takes a fixed name, which can be unquoted if it is syntactically a name in the language. A slot name can be any non-empty string, but if the name is not made up of letters, numbers, and ., it needs to be quoted (by backticks or single or double quotes).

In the case of the slot function, name can be any expression that evaluates to a valid slot in the class definition. Generally, the only reason to use the functional form rather than the simpler operator is because the slot name has to be computed.

value

A new value for the named slot. The value must be valid for this slot in this object's class.

check

In the replacement version of slot, a flag. If TRUE, check the assigned value for validity as the value of this slot. User's coded should not set this to FALSE in normal use, since the resulting object can be invalid.

x

either the name of a class (as character string), or a class definition. If given an argument that is neither a character string nor a class definition, slotNames (only) uses class(x) instead.

Details

The definition of the class specifies all slots directly and indirectly defined for that class. Each slot has a name and an associated class. Extracting a slot returns an object from that class. Setting a slot first coerces the value to the specified slot and then stores it.

Unlike general attributes, slots are not partially matched, and asking for (or trying to set) a slot with an invalid name for that class generates an error.

The @ extraction operator and slot function themselves do no checking against the class definition, simply matching the name in the object itself. The replacement forms do check (except for slot in the case check=FALSE). So long as slots are set without cheating, the extracted slots will be valid.

Be aware that there are two ways to cheat, both to be avoided but with no guarantees. The obvious way is to assign a slot with check=FALSE. Also, slots in R are implemented as attributes, for the sake of some back compatibility. The current implementation does not prevent attributes being assigned, via attr<-, and such assignments are not checked for legitimate slot names.

Value

The "@" operator and the slot function extract or replace the formally defined slots for the object.

Functions slotNames and getSlots return respectively the names of the slots and the classes associated with the slots in the specified class definition. Except for its extended interpretation of x (above), slotNames(x) is just names(getSlots(x)).

References

Chambers, John M. (2008) Software for Data Analysis: Programming with R Springer. (For the R version.)

Chambers, John M. (1998) Programming with Data Springer (For the original S4 version.)

See Also

@, Classes, Methods, getClass, names.

Examples



setClass("track", representation(x="numeric", y="numeric"))
myTrack <- new("track", x = -4:4, y = exp(-4:4))
slot(myTrack, "x")
slot(myTrack, "y") <- log(slot(myTrack, "y"))
utils::str(myTrack)

getSlots("track") # or
getSlots(getClass("track"))
slotNames(class(myTrack)) # is the same as
slotNames(myTrack)



[Package methods version 2.15.3 Index]