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From Oliver Heger <>
Subject Re: FormattableUtils
Date Mon, 25 Apr 2011 15:22:33 GMT
Am 25.04.2011 09:17, schrieb Henri Yandell:
> On Fri, Apr 22, 2011 at 11:32 PM, Henri Yandell<>  wrote:
>> On Fri, Apr 22, 2011 at 8:58 AM, Gary Gregory<>  wrote:
>>> On Fri, Apr 22, 2011 at 9:58 AM, Matt Benson<>  wrote:
>>>> On Fri, Apr 22, 2011 at 8:56 AM, Gary Gregory<>
>>>> wrote:
>>>>> Hi All:
>>>>> Now that we have the shiny and new FormattableUtils class, what are the
>>>>> other opportunities in [lang] to eat our own dog food?
>>>> What did you have in mind?
>>> I am just wondering what other [lang] classes should be Formattable.
>>> StopWatch for example?
>> Having hijacked the thread; possible Formattables that jump out:
>> Fraction
>> Range
>> StopWatch
>> The Mutables (or maybe Formatter knows special things about Number already)
>> BitField
> So I think the full potential list is the above plus StrBuilder,
> CharSet and JavaVersion.
> I'm not sure if it makes sense for each; but those are our current
> custom business objects.
> I'm scratching my head over Pair a bit though. What benefit did we add
> by implementing Formattable? My off-hand comment was hoping we would
> replace Gary's need to have his own subclass just to change the
> format, but he still needs that.
> I'm also not sure of the benefit of FormattableUtils.append. We pass a
> CharSequence in and do much what the JDK would do on the toString?
> It almost feels that we need to add our own Formattable interface, but
> instead of formatTo we would have toString(String format). That's a
> weak API though. Users can't dictate whether the left or right comes
> first for the Pair example, they're stuck with left then right. The
> 'better' solution is to have a PairFormat class that has its own
> custom pattern language (%L and %R etc).
> What am I missing?
> Currently I feel that we can dump FormattableUtils, simplify the
> toString on Pair and tell Gary to suck it up, and then go do a bunch
> of testing to see if the Mutables will work with String.format's
> numerical flags (I'm suspecting it doesn't, making these irritating to
> use and in need of some javadoc to warn the user).
> Hen
Could we introduce a generic pattern language based on the properties of 
the objects to be formatted? For the Pair class an example pattern could 
look like "({left}, {right})".

The variables could be resolved by reflection calls. FormatUtils could 
do this and implement the padding stuff in a generic way.

This would not directly solve the original problem - having a 
customizable toString() method. But it would at least provide a 
convenient way to transform objects to strings.


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