Referencing objects own functions

Peter Otten __peter__ at
Tue Oct 19 18:12:06 CEST 2004

pip wrote:

> Hi all,
> Pretend I have the following:
> class foo:
>   commands = [
>     'name': 'help',
>     'desc': 'Print help',
>   ]
>   def print_help(self):
>     print "Help is on the way!"
> I would like to add another entry to the commands dict. called 'func'
> or something which contains a reference to a function in the foo
> class. What would the entry look like if atall possible?
> I would rather not use eval if possible.

As a rule of thumb, you can do everything in a class suite that can be done
in a function definition. 

def print_help(self):
   # code

binds the print_help name to a function object in the same way as
one = 1 binds 'one' to the integer object 1. Therefore you have to define it
before you can use the reference:

>>> class foo:
...     def print_help(self):
...             print "help is on the way"
...     commands = dict(
...             name="help",
...             desc="print help",
...             func=print_help)
>>> fooinst = foo()

There are two ways to call commands["func"], but both require that you
explicitly provide the self parameter:

>>> fooinst.commands["func"](fooinst)
help is on the way
>>> foo.commands["func"](fooinst)
help is on the way

While calling the function stored in the commands dictionary is a bit more
tedious than normal method invocation, all efforts to simply that depend
heavily on what you actually want to do with the function stored in the


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