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Pitfalls met while opening multiple files

by foobarrior (Initiate)
on Jul 24, 2011 at 15:13 UTC ( #916417=perlquestion: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??
foobarrior has asked for the wisdom of the Perl Monks concerning the following question:

Hi all! I'm trying to do the following:
use warnings; use strict; open @$_ for ([\*STDIN, '< input.txt'], [\*STDOUT, '> output.txt']);
I just got

Can't use string ("2") as a symbol ref while "strict refs" in use at line 4.

But passing by one element works perfectly:
open $_->[0], $_->[1], $_->[2] for ([\*STDIN, '< input.txt'], [\*STDOUT, '> output.txt']);
But I think it looks ugly. Is there some way to do what I want?

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: Pitfalls met while opening multiple files
by moritz (Cardinal) on Jul 24, 2011 at 16:45 UTC
    The problem here is that open has a prototype, so it puts the @$_ in scalar context instead of interpolating it into the argument list.

    For normal routines that can be circumvented by calling it with an ampersand, &yourroutine(@$_). Unfortunately I don't know how that works with open, neither &CORE::open(@$_) nor &open(@$_) work.

    Perl 6 solves this problem by introducing a new syntax for explicitly interpolating arrays and hashes into argument lists, there it would be spelled open |@argumentlist.

      Ah yes, that makes perfect sense.


Re: Pitfalls met while opening multiple files
by chrestomanci (Priest) on Jul 24, 2011 at 17:05 UTC

    Are you actually trying to (re)open stdin or stdout, or where those just the name you picked for your filehandles? From your code it looks like you are doing normal file operations. If that is the case it is not a good idea to name your handles STDIN etc. At best it creates confusing code, at worst it will cause unexpected results.

    As armstd, it looks like your syntax may be confusing the compiler not to mention other programmers trying to read your code. Instead why not write:

    my @open_specs = ( { 'handle' => undef, 'file' => 'input.txt', 'mode' => '<', } # Fill in more files/modes here ); foreach my $open_spec (@open_specs) { my($file, $mode) = @$open_spec{'file', 'mode'}; # hash slic +e; my $fh; open $fh, $mode, $file or die "Error opening file $file in mode $m +ode $!"; $open_spec->{'handle'} = $fh; }
Re: Pitfalls met while opening multiple files
by armstd (Friar) on Jul 24, 2011 at 16:08 UTC

    Without digging into it, my guess is that you're hitting an issue with indirect object syntax. Maybe the syntax you'd like to use just removes too many hints for the compiler to figure out how to feed open properly.

    I think in this case, the brevity of your code is really not helping you. What other debugging steps have you taken? Have you tried breaking down your code, eliminating the for loop, etc? Do you know the value of $_->[2] in your example? (not that that has anything to do with your issue...) Since it's strict complaining, have you tried turning off strict refs to see if anything else goes wrong?


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