[Ironruby-core] Implementation plan and a string question...

Lee Culver leculver at microsoft.com
Wed Nov 7 17:40:28 EST 2007

I've been playing with IronRuby a bit today, and I notice that the reflection methods are not yet implemented (e.g. running "".methods in the interpreter does not produce the expected result).  This is not surprising, given the early stages of development.

Is there a plan in place as to which features currently have the highest priority for implementation, and if so what is the priority of reflection?  IMO, reflection methods should probably be a moderately high priority, as this would help with implementing most other features.  For example, I was trying to see what string functions were missing from the implementation from within the IronRuby interpreter, but got an error when trying to get the methods for strings...  Of course I can pull up the source (and did), but I think implementing some of these things would be easier with reflection in place.  Just a suggestion...

My second question is related to strings...  You are currently StringBuilder to implement your MutableString class, though there is a comment about eventually replacing this with byte[].  Is there any ETA on when that might happen?  I had wanted to work on implementing some of the string functions to get myself acquainted with the codebase, but I see that the string class is in a state where it might not be the best of ideas to try to add new functionality...  Or, if you are willing to accept a patch for it, I may try the StringBuilder -> byte[] conversion myself.

Lastly, I see the following in the code base: /*!*/.  For example:
        public MutableString/*!*/ Append(string/*!*/ str, int startIndex, int charCount) {
What does this mean?  Is there a coding standards document which describes this?  I don't see any documentation in the codebase about it, but I assume that it means roughly the same as it does in ruby (that the method is destructive or somehow changing the object), but I can't reconcile that with some things I see in the code base...(for example, why the ! on the str parameter?).

Thanks for your time,
-Lee Culver
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