Properties don't behave like variables?

Chris Cain clcain at
Mon May 7 14:41:33 PDT 2012

On Monday, 7 May 2012 at 21:34:29 UTC, Jonathan M Davis wrote:
> You mean the setter?
> Having a getter property function return by ref does allow you 
> to use a
> property exactly as you would a variable, because you're 
> operating on the ref
> that's returned. It also makes the property function 
> nigh-on-useless, because
> then you're operating on its associated variable outside of the 
> property
> function, making it so that you can no longer control access to 
> it. You pretty
> much might as well make it a public variable at that point. Not 
> to mention,
> even if returning by ref didn't have that problem, it would 
> only work in cases
> where the property function was associated with an actual 
> variable (since you
> have to return a ref to _something_), so it would still be 
> impossible to
> emulate a variable with property functions which calculate the 
> value from
> other variables or which grab the value from somewhere else 
> (e.g. a database).
> - Jonathan M Davis

And what about my idea of returning a struct by ref and using a 
struct to represent all of the operations you're interested in? 
As far as I can see, it should work, but admittedly, it's not as 
slick as it could be.

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