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|Conditional compilation and program transformation|
ISO Prolog defines no way for program transformations such as macro expansion or conditional compilation. Expansion through term_expansion/2 and expand_term/2 can be seen as part of the de-facto standard. This mechanism can do arbitrary translation between valid Prolog terms read from the source file to Prolog terms handed to the compiler. As term_expansion/2 can return a list, the transformation does not need to be term-to-term.
:- Goal. Goal is then treated as a directive. If Term2 is a list, all terms of the list are stored in the database or called (for directives). If Term2 is of the form below, the system will assert Clause and record the indicated source location with it:
When compiling a module (see chapter
6 and the directive module/2),
will first try term_expansion/2
in the module being compiled to allow for term expansion rules that are
local to a module. If there is no local definition, or the local
definition fails to translate the term, expand_term/2
will try term_expansion/2
user. For compatibility with SICStus and Quintus Prolog,
this feature should not be used. See also expand_term/2, goal_expansion/2
It is possible to act on the beginning and end of a file by expanding
latter is supported by most Prolog systems that support term expansion
end_of_file on reaching the end of the input.
begin_of_file may be used to initialise the
compilation, for example base on the file name extension. It was added
in SWI-Prolog 8.1.1.
The current macro-expansion mechanism originates from Prolog systems in the 1980s and 1990s. It has several flaws, (1) the hooks act globally (except for definitions in a module), (2) it is hard to deal with interactions between transformations, (3) macros can not be reused between modules using the normal module export/import protocol and (4) it is hard to make source code aware tools such as the graphical debugger act properly in the context of macro expansion. Several Prolog implementations have tried to implement better expansion mechanisms. None of these solve all problems and all are largely incompatible with our current macro expansion. Future versions may provide a new mechanism to solve these issues.
Controlled interaction is provided between macro expansion defined in
a module and the
Here, SWI-Prolog uses a pipeline where the result of local
module expansion is the input for the expansion in
which is the input for the expansion in
system. See also section
Scoping, i.e., make a rule defined in a module only active
if this module is imported into the module being compiled, can be
emulated by defining the macro globally in the
and some logic to verify the macro expansion should apply. If (goal)
expansion effectively defined inlining it is good practice to
also define the predicate and have the macro expansion check that the
predicate is in scope. Here is an example.
:- module(m1, [double/2]). double(X, D) :- D is X*2. user:goal_expansion(double(X,D), D is X*2) :- prolog_load_context(module, M), predicate_property(M:double(_,_), imported_from(m1)).
For term expansion that is not related to a specific predicate we can define a sentinel predicate rather than using the goal predicate and check it is imported into the current module to verify that the module that defines the expansion is imported into the current compilation context.
if we are in a‘false branch' of the conditional compilation. See section 126.96.36.199.
userand finally in
system. Library modules inherit directly from
systemand can thus not be re-interpreted by term expansion rules in
The predicate goal_expansion/2
is first called in the module that is being compiled, and then follows
the module inheritance path as defined by default_module/2,
i.e., by default
system. If Goal
is of the form Module:Goal where Module
is instantiated, goal_expansion/2
is called on Goal using rules from module Module
followed by default modules for Module.
Only goals appearing in the body of clauses when reading a source file are expanded using this mechanism, and only if they appear literally in the clause, or as an argument to a defined meta-predicate that is annotated using‘0' (see meta_predicate/1). Other cases need a real predicate definition.
The expansion hook can use prolog_load_context/2 to obtain information about the context in which the goal is expanded such as the module, variable names or the encapsulating term.
If goal_expansion/2 wraps a goal as in the example below the system still reaches fixed-point as it prevents re-expanding the expanded term while recursing. It does re-enable expansion on the arguments of the expanded goal as illustrated in t2/1 in the example.59After discussion with Peter Ludemann and Paulo Moura on the forum.
:- meta_predicate run(0). may_not_fail(test(_)). may_not_fail(run(_)). goal_expansion(G, (G *-> true ; error(goal_failed(G),_))) :- may_not_fail(G). t1(X) :- test(X). t2(X) :- run(run(X)).
Is expanded into
t1(X) :- ( test(X) *-> true ; error(goal_failed(test(X)), _) ). t2(X) :- ( run((run(X)*->true;error(goal_failed(run(X)), _))) *-> true ; error(goal_failed(run(run(X))), _) ).
Note that goal expansion should not bind any variables in the clause. Doing so may impact the semantics of the clause if the variable is also used elsewhere. In the general case this is not verified. It is verified for \+/1 and ;/2, resulting in an exception.
Note that in some cases multiple expansions of similar goals can
share the same compiled auxiliary predicate. In such cases, the
implementation of goal_expansion/2
can use predicate_property/2
using the property
defined to test whether the predicate is already defined in
the current context.
Head-->Bodyinto a normal Prolog clause. Normally this functionality should be accessed using expand_term/2.
trueif the variable is guaranteed to be unbound at entry of the goal, otherwise its value is false. This implies that the variable first appears in this goal or a previous appearance was in a negation (\+/1) or a different branch of a disjunction.
trueif the variable is a syntactic singleton in the term it appears in. Note that this tests that the variable appears exactly once in the term being expanded without making any claim on the syntax of the variable. Variables that appear only once in multiple branches are not singletons according to this property. Future implementations may improve on that.
This sections documents extended versions of the program transformation predicates that also transform the source layout information. Extended layout information is currently processed, but unused. Future versions will use for the following enhancements:
subterm_positionsof read_term/2. The output layout should be a variable if no layout information can be computed for the expansion; a sub-term can also be a variable to indicate “don't know''.
Conditional compilation builds on the same principle as term_expansion/2, goal_expansion/2 and the expansion of grammar rules to compile sections of the source code conditionally. One of the reasons for introducing conditional compilation is to simplify writing portable code. See section C for more information. Here is a simple example:
:- if(\+source_exports(library(lists), suffix/2)). suffix(Suffix, List) :- append(_, Suffix, List). :- endif.
Note that these directives can only appear as separate terms in the
input. SWI-Prolog accomodates syntax extensions under conditional
compilation by silently ignoring syntax errors when in the
false branch. This allow, for example, for the code below. With
rational number support
1r3 denotes the rational number 1/3
while without it is a syntax error. Note that this only works properly
if (1) the syntax error still allows to re-synchronize on the full stop
of the invalid clause and (2) the subsequent conditional compilation
directive is valid.
:- if(current_prolog_flag(bounded, false)). one_third(1r3). :- endif.
Typical usage scenarios include:
:- else. :-if(Goal)....
:- endif.In a sequence as below, the section below the first matching
elifis processed. If no test succeeds, the else branch is processed.
:- if(test1). section_1. :- elif(test2). section_2. :- elif(test3). section_3. :- else. section_else. :- endif.