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Re: ++ turns undef into 0 first

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September 26, 2005 14:58
Re: ++ turns undef into 0 first
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On Thu, Aug 18, 2005 at 10:49:30AM -0700, Peter Scott wrote:
> This recently bit me:
> $ perl -wle 'print 42 if defined($h{foo}++)'
> 42
> Now, before thousands of you reach for the flamethrowers, yes, I know
> - now - that this is documented.  I found it in perlop right where it
> ought to be:
> | undef is always treated as numeric, and in particular is changed to 0
> | before incrementing (so that a post-increment of an undef value will
> | return 0 rather than undef).
> The only thing that perturbs me is that I had to find this after I was
> starting to wonder whether there was a bug.  So this looks to me like
> suboptimal behavior that has been documented; any chance of making it
> behave the more logical way, i.e., that the expression evaluates to the
> original value and not some modified one?  I can't imagine there is much
> code relying on the current behavior.

Well, I have written code that makes use of this 'feature'. I might
fail if 'undef' was returned, but more likely it would start emitting

But all I remember is having used this feature. I've no idea whether
that code is still running somewhere.


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