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[CLJ-1278] Identify Clojure namespace and function name in a compiled function's toString() Created: 10/Oct/13  Updated: 26/Nov/14

Status: Open
Project: Clojure
Component/s: None
Affects Version/s: Release 1.5
Fix Version/s: None

Type: Enhancement Priority: Minor
Reporter: Howard Lewis Ship Assignee: Unassigned
Resolution: Unresolved Votes: 9
Labels: errormsgs, interop

Attachments: Text File CLJ-1278-2.patch     Text File CLJ-1528--function-tostring.patch    
Patch: Code and Test


For debugging purposes, it would be useful to have Clojure-oriented toString() for functions.


instead of:


This would remove the frustration of mentally de-mangling the function name from the Java class name.

This will have a relatively insignificant change to the generated code: An implementation of the toString() method. This will add a few dozen bytes to the size of a compiled Clojure function (for the additional bytecodes, and the constant string).

Comment by Howard Lewis Ship [ 10/Oct/13 8:39 PM ]

Contains changes and updated tests. I don't have any details on if this affects compiler performance or generated code size in any significant or even measurable way.

Comment by Andy Fingerhut [ 11/Oct/13 4:06 PM ]

Howard, sorry I do not have more useful comments on the changes you make in your patch. Right now I only have a couple of minor comments on its form. The preferred format for patches is that created using the instructions shown on this wiki page: http://dev.clojure.org/display/community/Developing+Patches

Also, there are several parts of your patch that appear to only make changes in the whitespace of lines. It would be best to leave such changes out of a proposed patch.

Comment by Howard Lewis Ship [ 11/Oct/13 5:00 PM ]

Yes, I didn't notice the whitespace changes until after; I must have hit reformat at some point, despite my best efforts. I'll put together a new patch shortly.

Comment by Howard Lewis Ship [ 11/Oct/13 6:26 PM ]

Clean patch

Comment by Howard Lewis Ship [ 25/Nov/14 6:00 PM ]

FYI, it's been a year. The correct file is CLJ-1278-2.patch.

Comment by Howard Lewis Ship [ 25/Nov/14 6:07 PM ]

... hm, something's changed in recent times.

     [java] FAIL in (fn-toString) (fn.clj:83)
     [java] nested functions
     [java] expected: (= (simple-name (.toString (factory-function))) (str "clojure.test-clojure.fn/" "factory-function/fn"))
     [java]   actual: (not (= "clojure.test-clojure.fn/factory-function/fn__7565" "clojure.test-clojure.fn/factory-function/fn"))
     [java] FAIL in (fn-toString) (fn.clj:83)
     [java] nested functions
     [java] expected: (= (simple-name (.toString (named-factory-function))) (str "clojure.test-clojure.fn/" "named-factory-function/a-function-name"))
     [java]   actual: (not (= "clojure.test-clojure.fn/named-factory-function/a-function-name__7568" "clojure.test-clojure.fn/named-factory-function/a-function-name"))

I'd be willing to update my patch if there's any indication that it will ever be picked up. It's been over a year since last update.

Comment by Andy Fingerhut [ 26/Nov/14 10:30 AM ]

The change in behavior you are seeing is most likely due to a fix for ticket CLJ-1330.

And in case you were wondering, no, I am not the person who knows what tickets are of interest. I know that this one has gotten a fair number of votes, and by votes is one of the top ranked enhancement suggestions - look under "enhancements" on this report, or search for 1330: http://jafingerhut.github.io/clj-ticket-status/CLJ-top-tickets-by-weighted-vote.html

The features going into Clojure 1.7 are pretty well decided upon, and a fair number of other fixes and enhancements were delayed to 1.8. A longer than 1 year wait is not unusual, especially for enhancements.

Comment by Howard Lewis Ship [ 26/Nov/14 3:06 PM ]

Thanks for the info; don't want to come off as whiny but The Great Silence is off putting to someone who wants to help improve things.

I'll update my patch, and hope to see some motion for 1.8.

Comment by Alex Miller [ 26/Nov/14 3:43 PM ]

There are ~400 open tickets for Clojure. As a printing enhancement, this is generally considered lower priority than defects. Additionally, the proposal changes the compiler, bytecode generation code, and adds fields to generated objects, which has unassessed and potentially wide impacts. The combination of these things means it might be a while before we get around to looking at it.

Things that you could do to help:
1) Simplify the description. Someone coming to this ticket (screeners and ultimately Rich) want to look at the description and get the maximal understanding with the minimal effort. We have some guidelines on this at http://dev.clojure.org/display/community/Creating+Tickets if you haven't seen it. For an enhancement, a short (1-2 sentence) description of the problem and an example I can run in the repl is best. Then a proposal (again, as short as possible). Examples: CLJ-1529, CLJ-1325, CLJ-1378. For an enhancement like this, seeing (succinct) before/after versions where a user will see this is often the quickest way for a screener to understand the benefit.

2) Anticipate and remove blockers. As I mentioned above, you are changing the size of every function object. What is the impact on size and construction time? Providing data and/or a test harness saves a screener from doing this work. It's better to leave details in attachments or comments and refer to it in the description if it's lengthy.

3) Have others screen (per http://dev.clojure.org/display/community/Screening+Tickets ) - while that is the job a screener (often me) will have to re-do, having more eyeballs on it early helps. Ask on #clojure for someone else to take a look, try it, etc. If there are open questions, leaving those in the description helps guide my work.

Comment by Howard Lewis Ship [ 26/Nov/14 4:09 PM ]

Alex, thanks for the advice. I'll follow through. Some of that data is already present, but I can make it more prominent.

I know that I'm overwhelmed by the number of issues (including enhancements and minor improvements) on the Tapestry issue list, so I'm understanding of problem space.

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