How To

Single Total With Params (|A|) x

We move on to the next in our series on Active Patterns, but this time we’re really just covering a slight modification to the Single Total pattern that we covered in the last post. All the same rules apply, we’re just adding the ability to add parameters to the Active Pattern. I say ‘parameters’ but in reality I mean ‘additional parameters’. Every Active Pattern has at least one parameter. The ‘x’ in ‘match x with’ has to go somewhere.

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Maps and Sets

In the most recent post in this series I implemented Tic-Tac-Toe using recursion to find the best moves. The point of that post was the recursion and I took the simplest approach I could think of to represent the actual board and moves. I used two lists of ints, one for each player’s list of occupied squares. The board itself wasn’t explicitly represented at all, it could be inferred from the two lists.

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Single Total (|A|)

Part 1 of this series was mainly sharpening the axe by covering some basics like Pattern matching. I also gave a general sense of what active patterns are (functions that can be used when pattern matching, such as in match expressions). Now it’s time to dig into the details. As I mentioned previously there are arguably 5 variations of active patterns. This post will cover the first of those, the Single Total Active Pattern.

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Recursion

This post looks at a hugely important part of functional programming, Recursion. In simple terms this means writing a function that calls itself. There are endless examples of using recursion to figure out Fibonacci numbers, or process lists. This post will be a little more complicated but hopefully is simple enough that you’ll be able to follow along. We’re going to teach F# to play the perfect game of Tic-Tac-Toe.

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Don't Scatter Logic All Over The Call Stack

Here’s a problem I come across all the time in legacy code and I have been guilty of it myself in the past. This isn’t going to be rocket science, but, apparently, this stuff doesn’t go without saying. Normal caveats about this being a simplified contrived example apply. Take a look at this code static void Main(string[] args) { PrintTradeBalance(); Console.ReadKey(); } Oh! to have code this simple right? It’s pretty clear what it does, it prints a trade balance, whatever that is.

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Memoization

Imagine you have a long running function that you’d like to avoid running unnecessarily. For the purposes of this post you’ll have to suspend disbelief and pretend that negating a number is an expensive task. This example prints out a message so you can see when it actually gets called. let Negate n = printfn "Negating '%A' this is hard work" n -n val Negate : int -> int > Negate 5;; Negating '5' this is hard work val it : int = -5 Now, let’s use that function when writing another.

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Unfolding Sequences

In my last post I worked through an example that finds the range of numbers that sum to a target value, or gets as close as possible without exceeding the target. I mentioned that the solution felt a little too like the loopy code I would have written in non-functional languages. I felt that there might be a more “functional” way of solving the problem, but I didn’t know what it was.

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Iterating, Incrementing, and Accumulating

Another F# session this evening and some more deliberate practice of Functional Thinking. To be fair, this post isn’t really about anything new. If you’ve ever used recursion, even in non-functional languages, this will be old news. If you are new to Functional Programming and/or recursion then this may be useful. Here’s a really simple function. It accepts a number n and sums all the numbers from 1 to n.

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Partial Application

Warning, novice functional thinker here. If you know your stuff, what follows may cause distress. I was messing with F# last night and I got a gentle reminder that I’m still a long way from thinking functionally, it still takes a lot of effort. I started with this let evens r = List.filter (fun x -> x % 2 = 0) r > evens [0..10];; val it : int list = [0; 2; 4; 6; 8; 10] Simple enough.

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The Anagrams Kata

The following is my C# implementation of the Anagrams Kata as described on cyber-dojo.com Write a program to generate all potential anagrams of an input string. For example, the potential anagrams of “biro” are biro bior brio broi boir bori ibro ibor irbo irob iobr iorb rbio rboi ribo riob roib robi obir obri oibr oirb orbi orib Let’s write a test. [Test] public void NoCharacters() { var expected = new List<string> {""}; Assert.

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