5.1. Printing and Validating Generic ArraysΒΆ

  • File ArrayUtil.ml, search for Week 05 definitions

The machinery to print whole arrays, as well as their sub-arrays has proven very useful in the previous examples. Let us now generalise it for the future use.

The functor ArrayPrinter below takes a module parameter P with some type t and a function pp (short name for pretty-print), which constructs a string out of a value of type t. The implementation of ArrayPrinter then uses pp as a function to define the two familiar machineries: print_sub_array and print_array. As you recall, those two were previously defined to work on arrays of integers only, but now they can be used for printing arrays of any data type, for which an instance of P is provided:

(* A functor for printing arrays *)
module ArrayPrinter = functor (P : sig
    type t
    val pp : t -> string
  end) -> struct

    (* Printing machinery *)
    let print_sub_array l u arr =
      assert (l <= u);
      assert (u <= Array.length arr);
      Printf.printf "[| ";
      for i = l to u - 1 do
        Printf.printf "%s" (P.pp arr.(i));
        if i < u - 1
        then Printf.printf "; "
        else ()
      Printf.printf " |] "

    let print_array arr =
      let len = Array.length arr in
      print_sub_array 0 len arr

Notice that the module type (i.e., signature) for P is given in-line via the sig ... end syntax, just to avoid the clutter with extra definitions.

The following utility function to convert an array to a list function is generic and hence is defined at the top level:

let to_list arr = array_to_list arr

In this chapter, we will see yet another linearithmic (i.e., working in \(O(n \log n)\)) algorithm for sorting. Therefore, it will be useful to be able to test automatically that it indeed sorts arrays. Since we have written the specification for sorting before, what seems like a logical next step is to makes this definition generic (similarly to what we have achieved by defining A functor for sorting), so it would only rely on an operation of comparing two elements in an array:

(* Checking whether an array is sorted *)
module SortChecker = functor (C : sig
    type t
    val comp : t -> t -> int
  end) -> struct

  let rec sorted ls =
    match ls with
    | [] -> true
    | h :: t ->
      List.for_all (fun e -> C.comp e h >= 0) t && sorted t

  let sub_array_sorted l u arr =
    let ls = subarray_to_list l u arr in
    sorted ls

  let array_sorted arr =
    sub_array_sorted 0 (Array.length  arr) arr

  let sorted_spec arr1 arr2 =
    array_sorted arr2 &&
    same_elems (to_list arr1) (to_list arr2)

Finally, in the remainder of this chapter it will be so common for us to require both a possibility to print and to compare values of a certain data type, that we merge these two behavioural interfaces into a single module signature, which will be later used to describe a parameter module for various functors that take advantage of both sorting and printing:

module type CompareAndPrint = sig
  type t
  val comp : t -> t -> int
  (* For pretty-printing *)
  val pp : t -> string