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Whiley v0.3.7 Released!

Development has continued at a fairly quick pace since the last release of Whiley.  However, with the impending start of term, things are bound to slow down.  Therefore, I’m making a release now a little sooner that otherwise planned.  This fixes a number of important bugs, finally allowing the compiler to compile my benchmark suite again.


  • The syntax for synchronous and asynchronous message sends is still causing headaches.  I’ve summarised the main problems in this post.
  • I’m also a little concerned about my rules for implicit coercions.  For example, for a set union operation with type {real}+[int], the right-hand side is implicitly coerced to be {int} and, hence, the result type is {real|int}.  In contrast, things behave slightly differently for an intersection with type {real}&[int].  In this case, the right-hand side is coerced into {real}, not {int}.  The reason for this is that, otherwise, the operation doesn’t make sense — as {real}&{int} would always return the empty set.  These rules seem a little confusing to me, and I suspect I need a clearer (perhaps less powerful) model.
  • I’m a little uneasy over the list append and set union regarding element additions.  For example, in an append of type [int]+int, the right-hand side is added as an element type of [int].  I’m just not sure if I like this or not.


  • Added first-class char and byte types, which compile down to their primitive equivalents on the JVM. A byte is somewhat different from that in Java, however, as it is not interpreted. That is, it corresponds simply to a sequence of 8 bits. You can perform the usual array of bitwise operations (&, |, ^, << and >>). However, unlike Java, a byte will not implicitly coerce into an int. Instead, you have to use a method which constructs an int assuming some kind of bit representation. Probably the most common one will be le2uint(byte), which generates and unsigned integer from a byte assuming a [[Endianness|little endian]] layout.  More discussion of the byte type can be found in this post.
  • Added support for method pointers.  This allows references to methods to be passed around, just like for function pointers.  An example method pointer type would be int(Reader)::(int) — this indicates a pointer to a method whose receiver is a Reader and which accepts an int parameter and returns an int value.
  • Fixed a lot of bugs.
Created on January 1, 1970. 404 Downloads, 702.6 KB.
BSD License
Created on January 1, 1970. 245 Downloads, 1.7 MB.
BSD License
Created on July 6, 2011. 802 Downloads, 2.2 MB.
BSD License

1 comment to Whiley v0.3.7 Released!

  • […] Implicit Coercions. These are causing me something of a headache as, in the context of structural subtyping, they’re quite tricky.  This post provides some insight into the problem, as does this post. […]

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