2.6 Function Type

The function type, along with the monomorph, is a type which is usually well-hidden from Haxe users, yet present everywhere. We can make it surface by using $type, a special Haxe identifier which outputs the type its expression has during compilation :

class Main {
  static public function main() {
    // i : Int -> s : String -> Bool
    $type(test);
    $type(test(1, "foo")); // Bool
  }

  static function test(i:Int, s:String):Bool {
    return true;
  }
}

There is a strong resemblance between the declaration of function test and the output of the first $type expression, yet also a subtle difference:

  • Function arguments are separated by the special arrow token -> instead of commas, and
  • the function return type appears at the end after another ->.

In either notation it is obvious that the function test accepts a first argument of type Int, a second argument of type String and returns a value of type Bool. If a call to this function, such as test(1, "foo"), is made within the second $type expression, the Haxe typer checks if 1 can be assigned to Int and if "foo" can be assigned to String. The type of the call is then equal to the type of the value test returns, which is Bool.

If a function type has other function types as argument or return type, parentheses can be used to group them correctly. For example, Int -> (Int -> Void) -> Void represents a function which has a first argument of type Int, a second argument of function type Int -> Void and a return of Void.


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