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From Hendrik Maryns <hendrik.mar...@uni-tuebingen.de>
Subject Trouble with generifying Commons CLI §1: org.jakarta.commons.cli2.validation
Date Mon, 13 Oct 2008 16:49:19 GMT
Hi,

I just wanted to share my experiences here with generifying some of the
commons packages.  I’ve been through several of them, when I needed
them.  The last one, just not, is CLI.

One package, however, is impossible to make generic.  IMHO, this
indicates a design flaw, although I admit that it’s a clever trick.

Tha package org.jakarta.commons.cli2.validation contains the interface
Validator:

public interface Validator {
    void validate(final List values) throws InvalidArgumentException;
}

What the several validators do is check whether the list contains
Strings that follow some format (a Date, a Number, a Class) and then
replace those strings with the corresponding item *in the same list*.
So the input is clearly always a List<String>, but after the method is
finished, this list will no longer contain strings, but something else.
 Clearly, with generics, this is impossible to express.  A proper way to
do this would be to return another list.

The only class that really does validation is EnumValidator, but since
there are real enums in Java 5 now, it is no longer needed.  Therefore I
would suggest totally rethinking this package.  Probably the best way to
go is to deprecate the whole package and use Transformers as they can be
found in Commons Collections, along with Predicates or some other tool
for this.

H.
-- 
Hendrik Maryns
Herrenberger Straße 40
D-72070 Tübingen
+49707143783
http://tcl.sfs.uni-tuebingen.de/~hendrik/
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