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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Dynamics AX X++ Team looking for input

Last week, the Microsoft Dynamics AX, X++ Team posted on their blog that they are looking for community input. Being out last week, I did not pick up this, and just saw it today.

If you have seen this, and already left your thoughts great! However if not, please visit the following direct link.: More help needed from community: Do you rely on string truncation?

From the post.:
"Previously the X++ language allowed the LEFT and RIGHT keywords on definitions of string variables. That is no longer valid X++. However, we still allow specifying an explicit string length. The X++ language runtime implicitly does string truncation on assignment, both directly and when passing parameters. Consider the following example:

{
str 5 s;
s = ‘124567890";
}

The resulting string will only contain the first 5 characters, i.e. ‘12345'. Normally the user would not explicitly provide the length of the string in this way, but the behavior is exactly the same when using an extended type that has a particular length. One example is the SysGroup type, that is defined as having length 10 in the properties for the extended data type. If you run

{
SysGroup g = ‘1234567890ABCDEFGHIJ";
print g;
}

You will only get the first 10 characters printed. The remaining ones are lost to truncation."


Finally.:
"The question for you to answer is: Do you rely on these semantics in your code? Would your code run well if all string types were equal and unbound? Do we need to muddy the waters for IL by introducing the same behavior in IL?"

My answer to this is that the IL code should not be made to operate like the current Interpreter does. Don't make the generated MSIL code operate against the nature of how the MSIL code works in every other .Net langauge.

Truncation should only happen at the database level, and if true truncation is needed for some kind of validation, then it should be performed with strlen() and substr() calls.

That's my two cents, what's yours? Make sure to let the X++ team know!




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