Commit 18d7cd3f authored by POTTIER Francois's avatar POTTIER Francois
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Explained refunctionalization.

parent 6a61ce5a
......@@ -177,6 +177,9 @@ let delayed_tree_to_iterator (dt : 'a delayed_tree) : 'a iterator =
In the above code, we have chosen to perform a left-to-right traversal of
the delayed tree, but could just as well have chosen a right-to-left traversal.
It is possible to make the delayed tree data structure implicit in the code;
this is explained [further on](#variant-getting-rid-of-explicit-delayed-trees).
## Constructing Delayed Trees
The type `'a delay` is a synonym for `'a`. We will use it as a decoration, in
......@@ -380,6 +383,116 @@ end
The rest of the code is unchanged (except the method `visit_mytree_delay` no
longer exists; one calls `visit_sometree` instead).
## Variant: Getting Rid of Explicit Delayed Trees
I like presenting delayed trees as an explicit data structure, because this
helps understand what is going on. However, if desired, it is possible to
hide them by *refunctionalization* (the opposite of *defunctionalization*).
Above, the function `delayed_tree_to_cascade` was written with the help of an
auxiliary function, `delayed_tree_to_head`. At the cost of a constant factor
in time, we could have written it directly, as follows:
let rec delayed_tree_to_cascade (dt : 'a delayed_tree) (k : 'a cascade)
: 'a cascade =
match dt with
| DTZero ->
| DTOne x ->
fun () -> Cons (x, k)
| DTTwo (dt1, dt2) ->
delayed_tree_to_cascade dt1 (delayed_tree_to_cascade dt2 k)
| DTDelay dt ->
fun () -> delayed_tree_to_cascade (force dt) k ()
In this form, the only function that is ever applied to a delayed tree is
`delayed_tree_to_cascade`. Therefore, wherever we construct a delayed tree
`t`, we could instead directly build a closure whose behavior is equivalent to
`delayed_tree_to_cascade t`. This is *refunctionalization*.
The data structure of delayed trees seems to disappears.
The type `'a delayed_tree` can be defined as a synonym
for a `'a cascade -> 'a cascade`. I usually refer to
this type as `'a producer`: it is the type of a function
that concatenates elements in front of the cascade that it
receives as an argument.
type 'a producer =
'a cascade -> 'a cascade
type 'a delayed_tree =
'a producer
The four data constructors are defined as follows:
let _DTZero k =
let _DTOne x k =
fun () -> Cons (x, k)
let _DTTwo dt1 dt2 k =
dt1 (dt2 k)
let _DTDelay dt k =
fun () -> force dt k ()
The reader can check that the types of these data constructors are the
same as in the previous version of the code. For instance, `_DTDelay`
has type `(unit -> 'a delayed_tree) -> 'a delayed_tree`.
The root function `delayed_tree_to_cascade` (without a continuation argument)
is defined as follows:
let delayed_tree_to_cascade (dt : 'a delayed_tree) : 'a cascade =
dt nil
The delayed tree monoid uses the new versions of the four data constructors.
In the method `plus`, we lose the little optimization whereby the data
constructor `DTZero` was recognized and eliminated on the fly.
class ['self] delayed_tree_monoid = object (_ : 'self)
method zero =
method plus =
method visit_delay: 'env 'a .
('env -> 'a -> 'b delayed_tree) ->
'env -> 'a delay -> 'b delayed_tree
= fun visit_'a env x ->
_DTDelay (fun () -> visit_'a env x)
let yield _env x =
_DTOne x
The four functions `_DTZero`, `_DTOne`, `_DTTwo`, and `_DTDelay` could be
inlined, if desired, so as to make the above code seem even more concise.
The rest of the code is unchanged.
In this version, delayed trees are no longer visible as an explicit data structure.
Nevertheless, the closures that are allocated at runtime still form a delayed tree;
so the runtime behavior of the code is exactly the same (except that we have a lost
a few optimizations along the way).
This version is more concise and more clever. I tend to prefer the explicit
version, as it is more pedagogical, in my opinion.
## Acknowledgements
KC Sivaramakrishnan asked whether a visitor can be used to construct an
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