18.104.22.168 Built-in Method Combination Types
The object system provides a set of built-in method combination types. To specify that a generic function is to use one of these method combination types, the name of the method combination type is given as the argument to the :method-combination option to defgeneric or to the :method-combination option to any of the other operators that specify generic function options.
The names of the built-in method combination types are listed in the next figure.
+ append max nconc progn
and list min or standard
Figure 7-2. Built-in Method Combination Types
The semantics of the standard built-in method combination type is described in Section 22.214.171.124 (Standard Method Combination). The other built-in method combination types are called simple built-in method combination types.
The simple built-in method combination types act as though they were defined by the short form of define-method-combination. They recognize two roles for methods:
- * An around method has the keyword symbol :around as its sole qualifier. The meaning of :around methods is the same as in standard method combination. Use of the functions call-next-method and next-method-p is supported in around methods.
- * A primary method has the name of the method combination type as its sole qualifier. For example, the built-in method combination type and recognizes methods whose sole qualifier is and; these are primary methods. Use of the functions call-next-method and next-method-p is not supported in primary methods.
The semantics of the simple built-in method combination types is as follows:
- * If there are any around methods, the most specific around method is called. It supplies the value or values of the generic function.
- * Inside the body of an around method, the function call-next-method can be used to call the next method. The generic function no-next-method is invoked if call-next-method is used and there is no applicable method to call. The function next-method-p may be used to determine whether a next method exists. When the next method returns, the around method can execute more code, perhaps based on the returned value or values.
- * If an around method invokes call-next-method, the next most specific around method is called, if one is applicable. If there are no around methods or if call-next-method is called by the least specific around method, a Lisp form derived from the name of the built-in method combination type and from the list of applicable primary methods is evaluated to produce the value of the generic function. Suppose the name of the method combination type is operator and the call to the generic function is of the form
- Let M1,...,Mk be the applicable primary methods in order; then the derived Lisp form is
(operator <M1 a1...an>...<Mk a1...an>)
- If the expression <Mi a1...an> is evaluated, the method Mi will be applied to the arguments a1...an. For example, if operator is or, the expression <Mi a1...an> is evaluated only if <Mj a1...an>, 1<=j<i, returned nil.
- The default order for the primary methods is :most-specific-first. However, the order can be reversed by supplying :most-specific-last as the second argument to the :method-combination option.
The simple built-in method combination types require exactly one qualifier per method. An error is signaled if there are applicable methods with no qualifiers or with qualifiers that are not supported by the method combination type. An error is signaled if there are applicable around methods and no applicable primary methods.
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