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Re: returning a hash from a module

by kcott (Chancellor)
on Feb 28, 2013 at 21:47 UTC ( #1021117=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to returning a hash from a module

G'day jms53,

To use Data::Dumper to display a hash, you should probably be using a reference to the hash in question. Consider this which uses a hash:

$ perl -Mstrict -Mwarnings -e ' use Data::Dumper; my %x = (a => 1); print Dumper %x; ' $VAR1 = 'a'; $VAR2 = 1;

Now compare the output using a reference to the hash:

$ perl -Mstrict -Mwarnings -e ' use Data::Dumper; my %x = (a => 1); print Dumper \%x; ' $VAR1 = { 'a' => 1 };

Using $date as a key seems ill-advised. Are there ever more than a single transaction on any given day? If so, you'll be overwriting all transactions for that day with the last one from the result set. Aim for unique keys: perhaps a combination of date and a transaction ID.

You're calling get_transactions() as MyDB->get_transactions(10000). I'll assume this is a class method with MyDB being the class. You could remove any ambiguity for Perl by writing MyDB::->get_transactions(10000); however, that's not your real problem here: the first argument to get_transactions() will be the class name and the second argument will be 10000, so your code for get_transactions() should look more like this:

sub get_transactions { my ($class, $transaction_id) = @_; ... }

Presumably, you're getting an empty result set because you don't have any transaction IDs called "MyDB". Adding a few basic debugging statements would have identified this issue for you rather quickly, e.g.

... my $transactions_id = shift; print "$transactions_id\n"; ... my $ar = $dbh->selectall_arrayref( $sql, undef, $transactions_id ) +; print Dumper $ar; ...

I'd also take a look at $dbh which appears out of the blue in get_transactions(). It might be worth passing that in as another argument so you know exactly what database handle you're using rather than relying on a correct global variable being in scope.

Finally, as a general rule-of-thumb, I'd always return a hashref, in preference to a hash, from a subroutine unless I had a very good reason not to. With a hashref, you're only returning a single scalar; a hash with the entire result set might contain hundreds, thousands or millions of scalars. And are you calling get_transactions() once or in a loop? [Use the same rule-of-thumb for returning an arrayref in preference to an array.]

-- Ken

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Re^2: returning a hash from a module
by jms53 (Monk) on Mar 01, 2013 at 19:09 UTC

    I will try with the hash reference for Data::Dumper.

    My output seems to be changing each time I call it, so will have to try to fix this over the week end.

    $date is unique, as it includes both informations, as well as time. (However, I'm not interested in displaying the time).

    Thanks a lot for the input.
    J -

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