Dictionary in Python

Alex alex at somewhere.round.here
Mon Mar 13 20:38:09 CET 2000

> Python does not actually hash on the object; instead, it hashes on the
> reference to the object (sort of, this isn't quite technically
> accurate, but I'm not familiar enough with the internals to make it
> more accurate) -- this is the reason why Python requires immutables as
> keys.

Hi, Aahz.

I was under the impression that it hashes on the value of hash (object),
and that if you made a class with __hash__ and __cmp__ methods, you
could happily use instances of that class as keys.  I made a little
class like that recently, it seemed to work that way:

class Pattern:

    def __init__(self, characters, offsets):
        assert len(characters) == len(offsets) + 1
        self.characters = characters
        self.offsets = offsets

    def __hash__(self):
        return hash((self.characters, self.offsets))

    def __cmp__(self,other):
        return cmp((self.characters, self.offsets),
                   (other.characters, other.offsets))

    def __str__(self):
        output = []
        for character, offset in map(None, self.characters[: -1],
            output.extend([character, offset*'.'])
        return string.join(output, '')

    def __repr__(self):
        return 'Pattern(\'%s\', %s)' % (self.characters, self.offsets)

    def __len__(self):
        return len(self.characters)

    def positions(self, start):
        positions = [start]
        for offset in self.offsets:
            positions.append(positions[-1] + offset)
        return positions


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