[PD] (breaking symbols) was Re: find a list of numbers in a text file

Hans-Christoph Steiner hans at at.or.at
Tue Sep 6 22:04:28 CEST 2011

On Sep 6, 2011, at 12:30 PM, Jonathan Wilkes wrote:

> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: fbar <fbar at footils.org>
>> To: "pd-list at iem.at" <pd-list at iem.at>
>> Cc:
>> Sent: Tuesday, September 6, 2011 3:53 AM
>> Subject: Re: [PD] (breaking symbols) was Re: find a list of numbers  
>> in a text file
>> On Tue, Sep 06, 2011 at 09:44:33AM +0200, Frank Barknecht wrote:
>>> I'm not sure what "appears in the patch" should mean. It
>> definitly means
>>> that numercial-symbol selectors don't get shown and cannot be  
>>> written
>>> into a patch, so you cannot use them in the editor where "real"
>>> selectors should be written, like in [route].
>> Forgot to add: Of course it is possible and legal to "use" numerical
>> or
>> non-printable symbols as selectors, but they have to be constructed
>> dynamically and cannot be typed, in accordance with the restrictions
>> mentioned in the manual. Instead something like this can be used:
>>   [makefilename %d]
>>   |
>>   |                  [makefilename %d]
>>   |                  |
>>   [select symbol-dummy]
>> I used [makefilename %d] a lot in the rj library's [m_chorddict]
>> dictionary for chords, where some chord names are proper symbols,  
>> like
>> "m7", while others are floats like 7. The float-names get converted  
>> to
>> symbols internally to look up chord notes in a data structure array
>> keyed by symbols only (using [m_symbolarray]).
> At what point are you using numerical-symbol selectors?  Everything  
> you've
> described has the selector 'symbol'.
> If you mean you let the user send symbols or floats as the key and  
> convert
> internally, that's _exactly_ what I'm proposing.

I guess I'm not clear on your proposal.  Is it that a "symbol"  
selector automatically converts things to a symbol?  That makes a lot  
of sense, and would help with other issues.  Then you could also make  
symbols with spaces, like:

[symbol 43(
[symbol /home/hans/My Documents(


A quoting mechanism would also help.  We could probably get away with  
only \.  For example, \ for spaces, like:

[symbol /home/hans/My\ Documents(
[symbol I\ like\ lots\ of\ \ \ \ \ spaces(
[symbol commas\,\ in\ symbols(
[symbol semi-colon\;\ in\ symbols(

And last but least, and its already in there:

[symbol \43(
[symbol \-21343(
[symbol \-0.2e59(

Anything that just \ couldn't cover?



If nature has made any one thing less susceptible than all others of  
exclusive property, it is the action of the thinking power called an  
idea, which an individual may exclusively possess as long as he keeps  
it to himself; but the moment it is divulged, it forces itself into  
the possession of everyone, and the receiver cannot dispossess himself  
of it.            - Thomas Jefferson

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