How do you make a higher order function in Python?
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How do you make a higher order function in Python?
You have two choices: you can use nested scopes or you can use callable objects. For example, suppose you wanted to define linear(a,b) which returns a function f(x) that computes the value a*x+b. Using nested scopes:
def linear(a,b):
def result(x):
return a*x + b
return result
Or using a callable object:
class linear:
def __init__(self, a, b):
self.a, self.b = a,b
def __call__(self, x):
return self.a * x + self.b
In both cases:
taxes = linear(0.3,2)
gives a callable object where taxes(10e6) == 0.3 * 10e6 + 2.
The callable object approach has the disadvantage that it is a bit slower and results in slightly longer code. However, note that a collection of callables can share their signature via inheritance:
class exponential(linear):
# __init__ inherited
def __call__(self, x):
return self.a * (x ** self.b)
Object can encapsulate state for several methods:
class counter:
value = 0
def set(self, x): self.value = x
def up(self): self.value=self.value+1
def down(self): self.value=self.value1
count = counter()
inc, dec, reset = count.up, count.down, count.set
Here inc(), dec() and reset() act like functions which share the same counting variable.
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