[Rd] modifying a persistent (reference) class

Winston Chang winstonchang1 at gmail.com
Fri Aug 1 23:34:25 CEST 2014

R6 objects are basically just environments, so they're probably pretty
simple to save and restore (I haven't tested it out, though).


On Fri, Aug 1, 2014 at 4:00 PM, Gábor Csárdi <csardi.gabor at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Fri, Aug 1, 2014 at 4:47 PM, Ross Boylan <ross at biostat.ucsf.edu> wrote:
> [...]
>> First, I'd like to understand more about exactly what is saved to disk
>> for reference and other classes, in particular how much meta-information
>> they contain.  And my mental model for reference class persistence is
>> clearly wrong, because in that model instances based on old definitions
>> come back intact (albeit not with the new method definitions or other
>> new slots), whereas mine seemed to come back damaged.
>> Second, I'm still hoping for some elegant way around this problem (how
>> to redefine classes and still use saved versions from older definitions)
>> for the future, both with reference and regular classes.  Or at least
>> some rules about what changes, if any, are safe to make in class
>> definitions after an instance has been persisted.
>> Third, if changes to R could make things better, I'm hoping some
>> developers might take them up.  I realize that is unlikely to happen,
>> for many good reasons, but I can still hope :)
> I believe that the brand new R6 class system can do this. I mean your
> saved instances from old classes will be read back properly, with the
> old methods. They are on CRAN and also here if you want to experiment:
> https://github.com/wch/R6
> Best,
> Gabor
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