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Restored Object Method Compilation

Object Programmers,

I have recently discovered a problem with the object method compilation
technique discussed earlier in this newsgroup by David Fanning and
myself.  This discussion is archived on David's IDL page
(http://www.dfanning.com/tips/saved_objects.html).  The technique
discussed basically allows for the compilation of uncompiled methods for
objects restored from file when the entire set of methods resides in the
file class__define.pro.  The alternative (unacceptable in my opinion) is
to give each method its own file of the form class__method.pro 

The problem relates to superclasses.  The normal IDL implicit
compilation of an object's methods (contained in class__define.pro), as
when invoking obj_new('class'), proceeds up the inheritance tree,
compiling and defining all of the superclasses which are not yet
defined.  Our technique does not compile superclasses, and so our
methods are broken if they fail to override, or chain up to a superclass

One might think that all you would need to do is call the class__define
procedure for the class of the restored object, and all superclasses
would be defined and compiled as encountered.  This works in any context
but this one.  The reason why is that a restored object contains
implicitly in its definition the class structure definitions of all its
superclasses.  Therefore, when class__define is called, it doesn't call
or compile any of the superclass__define definitions.  As far as IDL is
concerned, "superclass" is already a valid class (struct) and nothing
further need be done. 

The only solution is to proceed up the inheritance tree compiling by
hand.  A procedure, resolve_obj, which accomplishes this, is attached. 
Note that the recursion must be breadth first as coded... that is, a
class must be compiled before its superclasses (because how would we
know which superclasses it has otherwise).  The way to call this routine
on a restored object is:


Alternatively, if you have the name of a class rather than an object
instance, you could do:


and the recursion would proceed in the same way.  To reiterate, this
procedure is necessary only when an class has been *defined* but not

pro resolve_obj,obj,CLASS=class,ROUTINE_INFO=ri
   if n_params() ne 0 then begin 
      if NOT obj_valid(obj) then begin
         message,'Object is not valid.'
   if n_elements(ri) eq 0 then ri=routine_info()
   for i=0,n_elements(class)-1 do begin 
      if (where(ri eq defpro))[0] eq -1 then resolve_routine,defpro
      if cnt gt 0 then resolve_obj,CLASS=supers,ROUTINE_INFO=ri