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Re: How to localize a symbol when using Manipulate?

  • To: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
  • Subject: [mg112611] Re: How to localize a symbol when using Manipulate?
  • From: John Fultz <jfultz at wolfram.com>
  • Date: Thu, 23 Sep 2010 04:20:41 -0400 (EDT)

Do you need to use a symbol?  Why not use a string?  Since you seem to be saying
that you would never make any assignments to it, a string should substitute in
cleanly for a symbol, and the quotes will not display in Manipulate output.

E.g.,

Manipulate[Expand[("a" + "b")^40]]

Sincerely,

John Fultz
jfultz at wolfram.com
User Interface Group
Wolfram Research, Inc.


On Wed, 22 Sep 2010 01:58:11 -0400 (EDT), Nasser M. Abbasi wrote:
> Mathematica experts:
>
> I came up against this problem when writing a demo.
>
> I simplified to it to the following:
>
> I want to make a call to a lower level function which makes an
> expression (say build a polynomial in s) and returns it back to be
> displayed.
>
> I want this function to use a symbol, say s, to build the polynomial.
>
> The problem is how to localize the symbol itself so it is not global.
>
> Since one dose not declare things in Mathematica, (sometime I wish I
> could) I can't declare the s to be a symbol, but must just use it.
>
> Here is a simple example to show the problem:
>
> If one does not pass a symbol for a lower level function during the call
> to be used in constructing an expression, then the expression will have
> $nnnn added to it.
>
> Manipulate[process[n], {n, 2, 10},
> Initialization :>
> (process[n_] :== Module[{s}, s^n])
> ]
>
> If you run the above, the result shown will be s$nnn^2  where nnn is
> some number.
>
>
> To solve the above problem, typical solution is to pass the symbol name
> to be used. Example
>
> Manipulate[process[s, n], {n, 2, 10},
> Initialization :>
> (process[s_, n_] :== Module[{}, s^n])
> ]
>
> If you run the above, the result shown will be s$^2
>
> There is a problem with the above solution. s in the above is global
> variable.  Hence s needs to be localized. Since 's' is not a control
> variable (like 'n' is in this example), it needs to be explicitly
> localized (control variables are localized by default).
>
> The problem is how to localize 's'?
>
> One can not write the following, since 's' becomes Null
>
> Manipulate[process[s, n], {n, 2, 10},
> {s, ControlType -> None},
> Initialization :> (process[s_, n_] :== Module[{}, s^n])
> ]
>
> If you run the above, the result shown will be Null^2
>
> I also can't use the Symbol[] trick
>
> Manipulate[process[Symbol["s"], n], {n, 2, 10},
> Initialization :> (
> process[s_, n_] :== Module[{}, s^n])
> ]
>
> One way is not not pass 's' at all, and on return, strip the $$$n from
> the symbol, as follows, However using ToExpression is not allowed in a
> demo (for same reason as Symbol is not allowed, security). (someone
> helped me long time ago with providing the following nice strip function
> here in this newsgroup)
>
> Manipulate[  strip[process[n]], {n, 2, 10},
> Initialization :> (
> process[n_] :== Module[{s}, s^n];
>
> strip[expr_] :==
> Module[{}, ToExpression[StringReplace[ToString[expr,
> FormatType -> TraditionalForm],
> c:LetterCharacter~~"$"~~DigitCharacter.. :> c]]];  )
> ]
>
>
> I have to use ToExpression, else the result will be String, which makes
> it hard to use later on, but is OK for just printing and display.
>
> Any one has other ideas I could try?
>
> thanks
> --Nasser



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