Recursion

Idio supports recursive functions. In fact, they are the basis of all looping constructs.

Here’s the factorial function:

factorial.idio
define (fact n) {
  if (n le 0) {
    1
  } {
    n * (fact (n - 1))
  }
}

printf "fact(7)   = %d\n" (fact 7)
printf "fact(200) = %d\n" (fact 200)
$ idio factorial
fact(7)   = 5040
fact(200) = 788657867364790503552363213932185062295135977687173263294742
            533244359449963403342920304284011984623904177212138919638830
            257642790242637105061926624952829931113462857270763317237396
            988943922445621451664240254033291864131227428294853277524242
            407573903240321257405579568660226031904170324062351700858796
            178922222789623703897374720000000000000000000000000000000000
            000000000000000

(Yes, that result is 375 digits long and been edited to fit the screen.)

Tail Call Optimisation

Idio is tail call optimised meaning that if the last expression evaluated is a function call then it doesn’t increase the size of the stack.

That sounds very useful for recursive functions however you should understand if your recursive call is the last function call.

In the factorial example, the call to the recursive function fact is just an argument to the * function which is the actual last function call. Here, then, we don’t get the expected benefits of TCO and can run out of memory quite easily.

Last built at 2024-06-17T06:11:40Z+0000 from 77077af (dev) for Idio 0.3