Poly/ML Basis Library

A list of the items in the Poly/ML basis. These are the pre-defined structures, values, types and functors. Many of them are from the Standard Basis Library and are not described in much detail here. The entries that are specific to Poly/ML are explained in greater detail.


Array Array2 ArraySlice Asn1 BinIO BinPrimIO Bool BoolArray
BoolArray2 BoolVector Byte Char CharArray CharArray2 CharArraySlice CharVector
CharVectorSlice CInterface CommandLine Date Foreign General GenericSock HashArray
IEEEReal INetSock IO Int Int32 IntArray IntArray2 IntArraySlice
IntInf IntVector IntVectorSlice LargeInt LargeReal LargeWord List ListPair
Math NetHostDB NetProtDB NetServDB Option OS PackRealBig PackRealLittle
PackWord16Big PackWord16Little PackWord32Big PackWord32Little PackWord8Big PackWord8Little PolyML Position
Posix Process Real RealArray RealArray2 RealArraySlice RealVector RealVectorSlice
RunCall RuntimeCalls Signal SingleAssignment SML90 Socket String StringCvt
Substring SysWord Text TextIO TextPrimIO Thread ThreadLib Time
Timer Universal UniversalArray Unix UnixSock Vector VectorSlice Weak
Windows Word Word8 Word8Array Word8Array2 Word8ArraySlice Word8Vector Word8VectorSlice
Word32 Word64            




ImperativeIO PrimIO StreamIO


! :: := @ ^ app before Bind
ceil chr Chr concat Div Domain EQUAL Empty
exnMessage exnName explode Fail false floor foldl foldr
getOpt GREATER hd ignore implode isSome length LESS
map Match nil NONE not null o ord
Option Overflow print real ref rev round size
Size SOME Span str Subscript substring tl true
trunc use valOf vector        


array bool char exn int list option order
real ref string substring unit vector word  


infix  7 * / div mod
infix  6 + - ^
infix  4 = <> > >= < <= 
infixr 5 :: @
infix  3 := o
infix  0 before

Standard Basis Library

Poly/ML supports the ML Standard Basis Library. The documentation is available as a book, The Standard ML Basis Library, by Emden Gansner and John Reppy.  This is a short overview with specific reference to the implementation in Poly/ML.

signature GENERAL
structure General: GENERAL

Mainly standard exceptions. All of the values in the General structure are available unqualified at the top level.

signature OPTION
structure Option: OPTION

The option type, defined as datatype 'a option = NONE | SOME of 'a, together with associated functions. Some of these are available unqualified at the top level.

signature BOOL
structure Bool: BOOL

Functions on type bool.

signature INTEGER
signature INT_INF
structure Int: INTEGER
structure LargeInt: INTEGER
structure Position: INTEGER
structure Position: INTEGER
structure IntInf: INT_INF

Int, LargeInt and Position are the same structure and provide operations on type int. In Poly/ML that is an arbitrary precision integer. Poly/ML does not support any fixed precision integers. IntInf provides additional functions, such as logical operations on integers. Note: there are functions to compute LCM and GCD in PolyML.IntInf.

Int32 provides a fixed precision 32-bit integer

signature REAL
structure Real: REAL
structure LargeReal: REAL

Real and LargeReal are the same structure in Poly/ML. They provide functions on type real.

signature MATH
structure Math: MATH

The mathematical functions on type real.

signature IEEE_REAL
structure IEEEReal: IEEE_REAL

Functions to manipulate IEEE real numbers, such as controlling rounding and handling not-a-number.

signature WORD
structure Word8: WORD
structure LargeWord: WORD
structure SysWord: WORD
structure Word32: WORD
structure Word64: WORD

Operations on machine words treated as unsigned quantities. Functions which would overflow simply wrap round. Poly/ML implements Word.word as a 31 bit quantity on 32-bit platforms and a 63 bit quantity on 64-bit platforms. In version 5.5 and earlier LargeWord and SysWord were implemented using a double precision version. From version 5.5.1 they are implemented as 32 and 64-bit versions as Word32 and Word64 respectively. Word64 is only available on 64-bit architectures. SysWord is used in the Windows and Posix structures. Word8.word is an unsigned byte.

signature CHAR
structure Char: CHAR

Operations on values of type char.

signature STRING
structure String: STRING

Operations on values of type string.

signature STRING_CVT
structure StringCvt: STRING_CVT

Additional string functions used primarily when converting between strings and string representations.

signature SUBSTRING
structure Substring: SUBSTRING

Operations on substrings. These are segments of strings defined by a base string, an offset and a length and are designed to allow substrings to be manipulated without the storage overhead of creating the substrings themselves.

signature TEXT
structure Text: TEXT

The Text structure collects together various structures related to characters.

signature LIST
signature LIST_PAIR
structure List: LIST
structure ListPair: LIST_PAIR

Functions on lists and lists of pairs.

signature VECTOR
signature ARRAY
structure Vector: VECTOR
structure Array: ARRAY

Polymorphic vector and array.

signature MONO_VECTOR
signature MONO_ARRAY
structure Word8Vector: MONO_VECTOR
structure CharVector: MONO_VECTOR
structure BoolVector: MONO_VECTOR
structure IntVector: MONO_VECTOR
structure RealVector: MONO_VECTOR
structure Word8Array: MONO_ARRAY
structure CharArray: MONO_ARRAY
structure BoolArray: MONO_ARRAY
structure IntArray: MONO_ARRAY
structure RealArray: MONO_ARRAY

Monomorphic vectors and arrays. Generally these are designed to be storage-efficient at the expense of time. CharVector.vector is the same as string so provides vector operations on strings. Word8Vector.vector is used in various places throughout the library as a binary analogue of string. BoolVector and BoolArray use single bits for each value.

signature ARRAY2
structure Array2: ARRAY2
signature MONO_ARRAY2
structure Word8Array2: MONO_ARRAY2
structure CharArray2: MONO_ARRAY2
structure BoolArray2: MONO_ARRAY2
structure IntArray2: MONO_ARRAY2
structure RealArray2: MONO_ARRAY2

Two dimensional arrays.

signature VECTOR_SLICE
signature ARRAY_SLICE
structure VectorSlice: VECTOR_SLICE
structure ArraySlice: ARRAY_SLICE

Polymorphic subvectors and subarrays.

structure Word8VectorSlice: MONO_VECTOR_SLICE
structure CharVectorSlice: MONO_VECTOR_SLICE
structure IntVectorSlice: MONO_VECTOR_SLICE
structure RealVectorSlice: MONO_VECTOR_SLICE
structure Word8ArraySlice: MONO_ARRAY_SLICE
structure CharArraySlice: MONO_ARRAY_SLICE
structure IntArraySlice: MONO_ARRAY_SLICE
structure RealArraySlice: MONO_ARRAY_SLICE

Monomorphic subvectors and subarrays.

signature BYTE
structure Byte: BYTE

Provides functions to convert between characters and Word8.word values and between strings and Word8Vector.vector values. In Poly/ML these can generally be implemented as a cast so do not incur any time or space overhead.

signature COMMAND_LINE
structure CommandLine: COMMAND_LINE

Access to the command line and arguments. Does not include arguments taken by the run-time system.

signature TIME
structure Time: TIME

Functions on times. Poly/ML implements this as microseconds since 1st January 1970 in Unix and nanoseconds since 1st January 1601 (FILETIME) in Windows.

signature DATE
structure Date: DATE

Functions on dates including conversions to and from Time.time.

signature TIMER
structure Timer: TIMER

Functions to return CPU time and garbage collection time.

signature PACK_WORD
structure PackWord8Big: PACK_WORD
structure PackWord8Little: PACK_WORD
structure PackWord16Big: PACK_WORD
structure PackWord16Little: PACK_WORD
structure PackWord32Big: PACK_WORD
structure PackWord32Little: PACK_WORD
signature PACK_REAL
structure PackRealBig: PACK_REAL
structure PackRealLittle: PACK_REAL

Operations to pack and unpack integers and reals into byte vectors.

signature IO
structure IO: IO

The IO structure contains types and exceptions used within the other IO structures.

structure TextIO: sig ... end

The TextIO structure is the top level of the IO stack for textual input and output. This is level likely to be used most often. Input and output are side-effecting and, if necessary, characters such as newlines are translated between the ML and operating system codes.

signature TEXT_STREAM_IO
structure TextIO.StreamIO: TEXT_STREAM_IO

This substructure access to a lower level of textual input and output. Output is not significantly different from that of TextIO but input is applicative rather than imperative. In essence this means that input functions return both a value, character or string, and a new stream. Reading from the new stream continues the input, reading from the original stream returns the previous value. This is intended to simplify backtracking in parsing and works particularly well with the scan functions in the library.

signature BIN_IO
structure BinIO: BIN_IO

BinIO is similar to TextIO but for binary input and output. While TextIO works on types char and string, BinIO works on bytes (Word8.word) and byte vectors (Word8Vector.vector). Unlike TextIO binary I/O does not perform any translation of characters.
Similar to TextIO.StreamIO.

signature PRIM_IO
structure BinPrimIO: PRIM_IO
structure TextPrimIO: PRIM_IO

The primitive I/O functions are the lowest level of the stack. They provide access to the underlying readers and writers.

functor ImperativeIO ( ... ): IMPERATIVE_IO
signature STREAM_IO
functor StreamIO ( ... ): STREAM_IO
signature PRIM_IO
functor PrimIO ( ... ): PRIM_IO

These functors can be used to build new stacks to provide input and output on data structures other than characters and bytes.

signature OS
signature OS_FILE_SYS
signature OS_IO
signature OS_PATH
signature OS_PROCESS
structure OS: OS

The OS structure contains a large number of functions for accessing operating system facilities. Most of them are grouped into substructures. OS.FileSys contains functions for examining directories and files. OS.Path operates on file path names. OS.Process provides functions to terminate the current ML program with various results, examine the environment and to run sub-processes. OS.IO provides the ability to poll a set of file descriptors.

signature COMMAND_LINE
structure CommandLine: COMMAND_LINE

CommandLine provides access to the command line arguments. Note that the Poly/ML run-time system recognises and removes various arguments and these are not included in the arguments available to the ML program.

signature SOCKET
structure Socket: SOCKET

Operations on sockets, providing access to network facilities from ML. Socket does not actually contain functions to create sockets. Instead these are found in the INetSock, UnixSock and GenericSock structures.

signature INET_SOCK
structure INetSock: INET_SOCK

Creates internet domain sockets and provides functions on internet addresses.

signature UNIX_SOCK
structure UnixSock: UNIX_SOCK

Creates Unix domain (local) sockets. This structure is not provided in the Windows implementation.

signature GENERIC_SOCK
structure GenericSock: GENERIC_SOCK

Can be used to create sockets in any domain supported by the system.

signature NET_HOST_DB
structure NetHostDB: NET_HOST_DB
signature NET_PROT_DB
structure NetProtDB: NET_PROT_DB
signature NET_SERV_DB
structure NetServDB: NET_SERV_DB

Look up names in various tables. NetHostDB looks up an internet address using DNS. NetProtDB looks up a protocol in (on Unix) /etc/protocols. NetServDB looks up a service in (on Unix) /etc/services.

signature UNIX
structure Unix: UNIX

Provides access to Unix-specific functions, such as forking a process. This structure is not provided in the Windows implementation.

signature POSIX
signature POSIX_ERROR
signature POSIX_SIGNAL
signature POSIX_PROC_ENV
signature POSIX_FILE_SYS
signature POSIX_IO
signature POSIX_SYS_DB
signature POSIX_TTY
structure Posix: POSIX

Provides access to a wide range of Unix system calls. This structure and the signatures are not provided in the Windows implementation.

signature WINDOWS
structure Windows: WINDOWS

Windows-specific functions. This structure is not provided in the Unix implementations.

Poly/ML Extensions

There are a number of extensions to Poly/ML. Most of these are described in greater detail in other documents.

structure Asn1: ASN1
signature ASN1

Operations on ASN1 binary encoding. There are functions to help convert between tree structures and byte vectors. This is experimental.

structure CInterface
signature CInterfaceSig

This is the older version of the foreign-function interface. The new version is in the Foreign structure. See the full documentation.

structure Foreign
signature FOREIGN

This is the new version of the foreign-function interface.

structure HashArray

Provides a hash-table type and operations.

structure PolyML

Contains a large number of operations specific to Poly/ML. See here for full information.

structure Process

This is the original implementation of parallelism in Poly/ML. It has now been reimplemented using the Thread structure. It is provided for backwards compatibility only.

structure RunCall
structure RuntimeCalls

RunCall contains various low-level operations for interface to the run-time system. RuntimeCalls contains symbolic definitions for entry points to the run-time system. These structures are intended only for use in the basis library itself and should not be used in user code unless absolutely necessary. It is very easy to use them in a way that will cause a crash or break the garbage-collector resulting in a failure at some point in the future.

structure Signal
signature SIGNAL

Provides a way of handling Unix-style signals. On Windows this deals only with the interrupt signal, SIGINT. See here for full information.

structure SingleAssignment

Provides references that can only be assigned to once. Once a variable has been assigned a value that is fixed and further attempts to assign a new value result in an exception. The main reason for providing this is that once the value has been assigned it is marked as an immutable cell and this has advantages in efficiency for the garbage collector. Locked cells that contain the same value can be shared with PolyML.shareCommonData. See here for more information.

structure SML90: SML90
signature SML90

Provides backwards compatibility with ML90. This was included in an earlier draft of the Standard Basis Library but was withdrawn before the final release.

structure Thread: THREAD
signature THREAD
structure ThreadLib

The Thread structure provides a way of creating parallel threads and synchronising between them. ThreadLib is an extension library for the Thread structure. See here for full information.

structure Universal
structure UniversalArray

The Universal structure provides support for a universal union type that can contain a value of any type. It is used in various library functions. See here for full information.

structure Weak
signature WEAK

Provides the ability to construct weak references, that is references that can be used to detect when all other pointers to the reference have been removed by the garbage collector. They are intended to allow a program to recover resources when they are no longer reachable. See here for full information.