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Random_seed initialization 
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Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2005 11:52 am
Posts: 7
Location: McGill University, Montreal Quebec
Post Random_seed initialization
Random_seed behaves differently when called as a function or as a subroutine. I am not sure if this is the expected behaviour. I am running yorick 2.2.02x. The following demonstrates this difference (starting in a fresh yorick):
> random(1)
> random_seed,.123
> random(1)
> random_seed(.123)
> random(1)
[0.0891647] //since gives initial random number, it is like seed is out of range.
> random_seed,.123
> random(1)
[0.162779]   //works when called as a subroutine.

I would have guessed that calling random_seed as a function would return the current random seed.

Tue Dec 17, 2013 4:05 pm
Yorick Guru

Joined: Wed Nov 24, 2004 12:51 pm
Posts: 96
Location: Observatoire de Lyon (France)
Post Re: Random_seed initialization

The problem is that Y_random_seed drops all its arguments and left nothing on top of the stack so when you call it as a function (without storing the result in a variable) the interpreter "displays" the result (the topmost stack item) which is the function itself and thus re-execute random_seed without any argument this time which reset the seed to a default value as you correctly guessed.

The fix is easy: just discard:
at the last line of function Y_random_seed in std1.c (line number 1120). Then the result of calling random_seed will be its argument (whatever it is). Another possibility could be to push a boolean (scalar int) to indicate whether the call was successful or not.

I am not allowed to push changes into Yorick repository so I left Dave decides if it is worth fixing this bug...

Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:51 pm
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Yorick Master

Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 9:43 am
Posts: 354
Location: Livermore, CA, USA
Post Re: Random_seed initialization
Commit 58b3486 "fixes" this. It is still an error to invoke random_seed as a function, but now its return value is its input instead of the function itself.

Just to make it clear what's going on, here's an interpreted function that acts like random_seed used to:

> func yo(x) { "yo"; return yo; }
> yo
> yo(.123)
> yo,.123
> print,yo(.123)
func yo(x)

Fri Dec 20, 2013 8:07 pm
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