# Trains

(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)
 Z←(f g) R is called a Monadic Hook — Z ≡ R g h R Z←L (f g) R is called a Dyadic Hook — Z ≡ L g h R Z←(f g h) R is called a Monadic Fork — Z ≡ (f R) g h R Z←L (f g h) R is called a Dyadic Fork — Z ≡ (L f R) g L h R Z←(f g h ...) RZ←L (f g h ...) R is also defined for longer Trains
L and R are arbitrary arrays.

This clever idea from the designers of J is called Trains where a parenthesized sequence of functions (which normally would signal a SYNTAX ERROR) can be interpreted as per the above descriptions. Note that the spacing between functions is for visual purposes only — it has no effect on the interpretation.

For example,

(,⍎)'2+3'
←→    '2+3',⍎'2+3'
←→    '2+3',5
2+3 5

avg←(+/ ÷ ⍴) defines a function that computes the average of a numeric vector.
avg 1 2 3 4
←→    (+/ ÷ ⍴) 1 2 3 4
←→    (+/1 2 3 4) ÷ ⍴1 2 3 4
←→    10 ÷ ,4
2.5

Longer Trains are defined as follows:

(e f g h) ←→ (e (f g h))
(d e f g h) ←→ (d e (f g h))

and in general

Even length: (a b c ...) ←→ (a (b c ...))
Odd length: (a b c ...) ←→ (a b (c ...))

For more applications of this concept, see the discussion in the Learning J manual.