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[Bug 14084] New: Hi! Returning a null from getItem() if the key does not exist is downright semantically wrong. null is a full-fledged value which can be serialized (JSONed), and is NOT the value we get if we do: var x = myObject.someUnknownProperty; In that case we get t

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Thu, 08 Sep 2011 12:13:03 +0000
To: public-webapps@w3.org
Message-ID: <bug-14084-2927@http.www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/>
http://www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/show_bug.cgi?id=14084

           Summary: Hi! Returning a null from getItem() if the key does
                    not exist is downright semantically wrong. null is a
                    full-fledged value which can be serialized (JSONed),
                    and is NOT the value we get if we do: var x =
                    myObject.someUnknownProperty; In that case we get t
           Product: WebAppsWG
           Version: unspecified
          Platform: Other
               URL: http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/#top
        OS/Version: other
            Status: NEW
          Severity: normal
          Priority: P3
         Component: Web Storage (editor: Ian Hickson)
        AssignedTo: ian@hixie.ch
        ReportedBy: contributor@whatwg.org
         QAContact: member-webapi-cvs@w3.org
                CC: ian@hixie.ch, mike@w3.org, public-webapps@w3.org


Specification: http://dev.w3.org/html5/webstorage/
Multipage: http://www.whatwg.org/C#top
Complete: http://www.whatwg.org/c#top

Comment:
Hi!

Returning a null from getItem() if the key does not exist is downright
semantically wrong. null is a full-fledged value which can be serialized
(JSONed), and is NOT the value we get if we do:

var x = myObject.someUnknownProperty;

In that case we get the 'undefined' value, and that is what the return value
of getItem() _should_ be if the item is not found. undefined is not
serializable (JSONable) and is never a valid value, whereas null is sometimes
an application-/domain-valid value. Returning null from getItem() is ambiguous
in the case of an application using null as a placeholder or a "falsy" value.
Returning undefined is unambiguous.

----- stephan beal (sgbeal@googlemail.com)

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