[C++-sig] Re: boost::variant in Python interface

Colin Irwin colin_irwin at hotmail.com
Mon Mar 29 03:02:13 CEST 2004

Sorry for the incomplete send - let me try this again:

I have a C++ interface that I would like to make available in a
corresponding Python module.  The interface contains a member function that
returns a vector of boost::variants, with the variant being one of  three
possible types.  I've used the boost::python::vector_indexing_suite class to
wrap the vector up, so far so good.  However, the core of the problem is how
to wrap the variant type up.

To provide a more concrete example, I have provided a sample implementation

class BaseData { ... };
class DataType1 : public BaseData { ... };
class DataType2 : public BaseData { ... };
class DataType3 : public BaseData { ... };

class DataProducer
        typedef boost::variant<DataType1, DataType2, DataType3> DataVariant;
        typedef std::vector<DataVariant> DataVector;

        void ReceiveData(DataVector& data_array)
            // Return data in the user specified data_array parameter.


I'm thinking it would be nice (and possible?) to somehow have the fact
hidden that there is a variant type involved.  By this I mean that the
various member data and member functions would simply either be available,
if the variant actually contained a type where these were available, or not
available, if the variant contained a type where these were not available.

What's the best approach to deal with this type of problem?  Has anyone
tried to use a boost::variant type through a Python interface?  Would it be
possible to wrap up the variant type is some way as to hide the
implementation, but still make functionality available?

Thanks in advance.


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