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Fwd: Re: [[Call]] and [[Construct]]

From: Doug Schepers <schepers@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 29 Sep 2009 21:13:40 -0700
Message-ID: <4AC2DAF4.5050805@w3.org>
To: public-script-coord@w3.org
Forwarded from public-script-coord-request@w3.org on behalf of Maciej.

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [[Call]] and [[Construct]]
Date: Wed, 30 Sep 2009 03:13:41 +0000
From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
To: David-Sarah Hopwood <david-sarah@jacaranda.org>
CC: es-discuss Steen <es-discuss@mozilla.org>, 
public-script-coord-request@w3.org


+public-script-coord

On Sep 27, 2009, at 4:19 PM, David-Sarah Hopwood wrote:

> Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
>> On Sep 27, 2009, at 11:14 AM, Brendan Eich wrote:
>>> On Sep 27, 2009, at 10:41 AM, David-Sarah Hopwood wrote:
>>>>
>>>> That can already be done in ES5. As I've previously suggested:
>>>>
>>>> function Date(yearOrValue, month, date, hours, minutes, seconds,
>>>> ms) {
>>>>  "use strict";
>>>>  if (this === undefined) {
>>>>    return TimeToString(CurrentTime());
>>>>  }
>>>>  // constructor behaviour
>>>>  ...
>>>> }
>>>
>>> Of course, a variation on "the idiom".
>>>
>>> This is similar to what many implementations do too, rather than the
>>> implementation providing analogues of [[Call]] and [[Construct]]
>>> internal method on a non-function Date object. It works for Boolean,
>>> Number, String, and RegExp too.
>>>
>>> But it is just a bit unsightly!
>>
>> Will this do the right thing if you explicitly bind Date to a "this"
>> value, for example, by calling it as window.Date(), or using call,
>> apply, or function.bind, or by storing Date as the property of
>> another
>> random object?
>
> Now that I think about it, probably not (it will attempt to set the
> [[Class]] of 'this' to "Date", which is unsafe). But the problem here
> isn't introduced by the fact that [[Call]] and [[Construct]] have
> different behaviour: none of the other built-in constructors can be
> safely expressed in ES5 for the same reason, regardless of their
> [[Call]] behaviour.

I believe the built-in constructors could be implemented correctly by
ignoring their "this" parameter and making a fresh object of the
appropriate type, rather than by modifying the [[Class]] of a presumed
"this" passed as part of construction. For any that have identical
[[Call]] and [[Construct]] behavior, it would then be fine to write it
as a function - either way it produces a new object and ignores
whatever may have been passed for "this". This is true for Array for
instance. (Object call and construct also look like they have the same
behavior, though written in two different ways for some reason.)

Regards,
Maciej
Received on Wednesday, 30 September 2009 04:13:43 UTC

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