[swift-evolution] Changing postfix "self" to something clearer like "type"

Brandon Knope bknope at me.com
Tue Dec 15 10:42:35 CST 2015

Doh! staticType is the obvious choice!

I agree that adding more keywords can be bad, but in this case I think the clarity outweighs any downside:


To me (and I'm sure many others) one is vastly more obvious and easier to understand. 

I still don't really understand what SomeType.self is trying to convey upon first glance


Sent from my iPad

> On Dec 15, 2015, at 11:34 AM, Dennis Lysenko <dennis.s.lysenko at gmail.com> wrote:
> +1. Side effects can be eliminated through code migration if a suitable property name is chosen. Perhaps `staticType` to continue in the vein of `dynamicType`? 
> Main detractor is that creating more keywords isn't necessarily a good thing.
>> On Tue, Dec 15, 2015 at 11:19 AM Brandon Knope via swift-evolution <swift-evolution at swift.org> wrote:
>> One area of swift that is really not clear to me is when you want to use the type of a class, struct, enum, etc as a value. 
>> Metatyping is explained here: https://developer.apple.com/library/ios/documentation/Swift/Conceptual/Swift_Programming_Language/Types.html#//apple_ref/doc/uid/TP40014097-CH31-XID_1022
>> Example: 
>> let metatype: SomeClass.Type = SomeClass.self
>> Is there a reason why this isn't SomeClass.type? Everywhere in the document this is explained as returning the type yet it's using a postfix self to access the type. 
>> I propose changing the postfix self to something more obvious like "type"
>> Going back to the example:
>> let metatype: SomeClass.Type = SomeClass.type
>> Several reasons why I think this is better:
>> 1. Postfix self is not obvious as an option as you never see a postfix self anywhere else 
>> 2. "self" does not clearly explain that the type is being returned 
>> 3. ObjC programmers are familiar with accessing the class type by sending the "class" method to the class type. In this case it needs to work on structs and enums, so a "type" method would make more sense. 
>> 4. Instances have a dynamicType method. For consistency, classes, structs, etc., should have a type method
>> Any other suggestions would be welcome. 
>> Brandon 
>> Sent from my iPad
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