[Rd] New pipe operator
pd@|gd @end|ng |rom gm@||@com
Mon Dec 7 17:18:34 CET 2020
I feel a bit bad coming late to this, but I think I am beginning to side with those who want "... |> head" to work. And yes, that has to happen at the expense of |> head().
As I think it was Gabor points out, the current structure goes down a nonstandard evaluation route, which may be difficult to explain and departs from usual operator evaluation paradigms by being an odd mix of syntax and semantics. R lets you do these sorts of thing, witness ggplot and tidyverse, but the transparency of the language tends to suffer.
It would be neater if it was simply so that the class/type of the object on the right hand side decided what should happen. So we could have a rule that we could have an object, an expression, and possibly an unevaluated call on the RHS. Or maybe a formula, I.e., we could have
... |> head
... |> head()
because head() does not evaluate to anything useful. Instead, we could have some of these
... |> quote(head())
... |> expression(head())
... |> ~ head()
... |> \(_) head(_)
possibly also using a placeholder mechanism for the three first ones. I kind of like the idea that the ~ could be equivalent to \(_).
(And yes, I am kicking myself a bit for not using ~ in the NSE arguments in subset() and transform())
> On 7 Dec 2020, at 16:20 , Deepayan Sarkar <deepayan.sarkar using gmail.com> wrote:
> On Mon, Dec 7, 2020 at 6:53 PM Gabor Grothendieck
> <ggrothendieck using gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Mon, Dec 7, 2020 at 5:41 AM Duncan Murdoch <murdoch.duncan using gmail.com> wrote:
>>> I agree it's all about call expressions, but they aren't all being
>>> treated equally:
>>> x |> f(...)
>>> expands to f(x, ...), while
>>> x |> `function`(...)
>>> expands to `function`(...)(x). This is an exception to the rule for
>>> other calls, but I think it's a justified one.
>> This admitted inconsistency is justified by what? No argument has been
>> presented. The justification seems to be implicitly driven by implementation
>> concerns at the expense of usability and language consistency.
> Sorry if I have missed something, but is your consistency argument
> basically that if
> foo <- function(x) x + 1
> x |> foo
> x |> function(x) x + 1
> should both work the same? Suppose it did. Would you then be OK if
> x |> foo()
> no longer worked as it does now, and produced foo()(x) instead of foo(x)?
> If you are not OK with that and want to retain the current behaviour,
> what would you want to happen with the following?
> bar <- function(x) function(n) rnorm(n, mean = x)
> 10 |> bar(runif(1))() # works 'as expected' ~ bar(runif(1))(10)
> 10 |> bar(runif(1)) # currently bar(10, runif(1))
> both of which you probably want. But then
> baz <- bar(runif(1))
> 10 |> baz
> (not currently allowed) will not be the same as what you would want from
> 10 |> bar(runif(1))
> which leads to a different kind of inconsistency, doesn't it?
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