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**Haskell Signatures**

Previously, we saw how to check the type of the function map:

```
Hugs> :t map
map :: (a -> b) -> [a] -> [b]
```

Haskell have a peculiar way to express types.

One way to interpreting this is the following:

map :: (a -> b) -> [a] -> [b] map :: {- is the function name -} (a -> b) {- This means that map takes a function as a argument -} -> [a] {- This means that map also takes an array of element type a as an argument -} -> [b] {- And return an array of elements type b -}However, Haskell work using currying, therefore the another way to see this is the following:

map :: (a -> b) -> [a] -> [b] map :: {- is a function -} (a -> b) {- that takes a function as a argument and return a new function (we called map_1) -} -> [a] {- This new function (map_1) will take an array of type a as an argument -} -> [b] {- and will return an array of element of type b -}In Haskell, currying is supported in order to support first-class functions. For example:

- Lets assume a function takes two arguments; however, only one argument will be supplied
- The function will be “curried” which means that it will produce a function of one argument (one that is not supplied)
- Therefore we could see it in this way:
`fn :: a -> b -> c`

where fn(a) yields a new function

`fn' :: b -> c`

in which fn'(b) is called to produce c

For example, lets say we wish to obtain the square root of the values 2 and 3 which are in a list, and return a new list with the results:

[2, 3] => [1.41..., 1.73...]We can use map together with the function sqrt (square root)!

If we check the type of sqrt we will find that:`Hugs> :t sqrt sqrt :: Floating a => a -> a`

This is a function that takes an element of type a as argument and return an element of type a as a result.

If we use it together with map, we obtain:`Hugs> :t map sqrt map sqrt :: Floating a => [a] -> [a]`

This means that when map takes sqrt function as a parameter, it will create a new function that will take an array of type a and return an array of type a.

Now let see it in action:

`Hugs> map sqrt [2, 3] [1.4142135623731,1.73205080756888]`

Now, lets analyse what could be happening internally in Haskell when this command line is executed:

- The code of map is the follow:
-- Map and append map :: (a -> b) -> [a] -> [b] map f [] = [] map f (xs) = f x : map f xs- The code of sqrt is the follow:
class (Fractional a) => Floating a where ... exp, log, sqrt :: a -> a (**), logBase :: a -> a -> a ... x ** y = exp (log x * y) sqrt x = x ** 0.5When we execute:

> map sqrt [2, 3]

`map sqrt [2, 3]`

match with

`> map f (xs)`

- Therefore,
`f x : map f xs`

is executed in which f is sqrt, x is the first element of the list, and xs is the rest of the list

sqrt 2 : map sqrt [3]- Then
`map sqrt [3]`

match again

f x : map f xsand is executed again to obtain

sqrt 2 : sqrt 3 : map sqrt []- map sqrt []

match

map f [] = []

obtaining

[]- Then we obtain
`sqrt 2: sqrt 3 : []`

- Finally, the functions are executed and we obtain
`1.4142135623731 : 1.73205080756888 : []`

which returns

`[1.4142135623731, 1.73205080756888]`

The following are some examples (fn means function) of types:

- fn is just a value:
`fn :: x`

- fn return a list of ys
`fn :: x -> [y]`

- fn return a typle of (y, z)
`fn :: x -> (y, z)`

- fn is a higher order function. It takes a function for argument (b->c) as an input an return a function Foo
`fn :: (b -> c) -> Foo`

- fn is an input/output action tha return an int value
`fn :: x -> IO Int`

© 2010, Alejandro G. Carlstein Ramos Mejia. All rights reserved.