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autobox::Core - Provide core functions to autoboxed scalars, arrays and
use autobox::Core;
"Hello, World\n"->uc->print;
my @list = (1, 5, 9, 2, 0, 4, 2, 1);
# works with references too!
my $list = [1, 5, 9, 2, 0, 4, 2, 1];
my %hash = (
grass => 'green',
apple => 'red',
sky => 'blue',
use feature qw(say); # Use print and a newline in older versions of Perl
[10, 20, 30, 40, 50]->pop->say;
[10, 20, 30, 40, 50]->shift->say;
my $lala = "Lalalalala\n";
"chomp: "->concat($lala->chomp, " ", $lala)->say;
my $hashref = { foo => 10, bar => 20, baz => 30, qux => 40 };
print "hash keys: ", $hashref->keys->join(' '), "\n"; # or if you prefer...
print "hash keys: ", join ' ', $hashref->keys(), "\n"; # or
print "hash keys: "; $hashref->keys->say;
The autobox module promotes Perl's primitive types (literals (strings
and numbers), scalars, arrays and hashes) into first-class objects.
However, autobox does not provide any methods for these new classes.
autobox::CORE provides a set of methods for these new classes. It
includes almost everything in perlfunc, some things from Scalar::Util
and List::Util, and some Perl 5 versions of methods taken from Perl 6.
With autobox::Core one is able to change this:
print join(" ", reverse(split(" ", $string)));
to this:
use autobox::Core;
$string->split(" ")->reverse->print;
Likewise you can change this:
my $array_ref = [qw(fish dog cat elephant bird)];
push @$array_ref, qw(snake lizard giraffe mouse);
to this:
use autobox::Core;
my $array_ref = [qw(fish dog cat elephant bird)];
$array_ref->push( qw(snake lizard giraffe mouse));
autobox::Core makes it easier to avoid parentheses pile ups and messy
dereferencing syntaxes.
autobox::Core is mostly glue. It presents existing functions with a new
interface, while adding few extra. Most of the methods read like `sub
hex { CORE::hex($_[0]) }'. In addition to built-ins from perlfunc that
operate on hashes, arrays, scalars, and code references, some Perl 6-ish
things have been included, and some keywords like `foreach' are
represented too.
What's Implemented?
* All of the functions listed in perlfunc under the headings:
* "Functions for real @ARRAYs",
* "Functions for real %HASHes",
* "Functions for list data",
* "Functions for SCALARs or strings"
plus a few taken from other sections and documented below.
* Some methods from Scalar::Util and List::Util.
* Some things expected in Perl 6, such as `last' (`last_idx'),
`elems', and `curry'.
* `flatten' explicitly flattens an array.
* Functions such as `add' have been defined for numeric operations.
String Methods
String methods are of the form `my $return = $string->method(@args)'.
Some will act on the `$string' and some will return a new string.
Many string methods are simply wrappers around core functions, but there
are additional operations and modifications to core behavior.
Anything which takes a regular expression, such as split and m, usually
take it in the form of a compiled regex (`qr//'). Any modifiers can be
attached to the `qr' normally.
These built in functions are implemented for scalars, they work just
like normal: chomp, chop,chr crypt, index, lc lcfirst, length, ord,
pack, reverse (always in scalar context), rindex, sprintf, substr, uc
ucfirst, unpack, quotemeta, vec, undef, split, system, eval.
In addition, so are each of the following:
Concatenates `$string2' to `$string1'. This corresponds to the `.'
operator used to join two strings. Returns the joined strings.
Removes whitespace from the beginning and end of a string.
" \t \n \t foo \t \n \t "->strip; # foo
This is redundant and subtly different from `trim' which allows for the
removal of specific characters from the beginning and end of a string.
Removes whitespace from the beginning and end of a string. `trim' can
also remove specific characters from the beginning and the end of
' hello'->trim; # 'hello'
'*+* hello *+*'->trim("*+"); # ' hello '
' *+* hello *+*'->trim("*+"); # ' *+* hello'
Just like trim but it only trims the left side (start) of the string.
' hello'->ltrim; # 'hello'
'*+* hello *+*'->trim("*+"); # ' hello *+*'
Just like trim but it only trims the right side (end) of the string.
'hello '->rtrim; # 'hello'
'*+* hello *+*'->rtrim("*+"); # '*+* hello '
my @split_string = $string->split(qr/.../);
A wrapper around split. It takes the regular expression as a compiled
print "10, 20, 30, 40"->split(qr{, ?})->elements, "\n";
"hi there"->split(qr/ */); # h i t h e r e
The limit argument is not implemented.
`title_case' converts the first character of each word in the string to
upper case.
"this is a test"->title_case; # This Is A Test
my $centered_string = $string->center($length);
my $centered_string = $string->center($length, $character);
Centers $string between $character. $centered_string will be of length
$length, or the length of $string, whichever is greater.
`$character' defaults to " ".
say "Hello"->center(10); # " Hello ";
say "Hello"->center(10, '-'); # "---Hello--";
`center()' will never truncate `$string'. If $length is less than
`$string->length' it will just return `$string'.
say "Hello"->center(4); # "Hello";
my $output = $string->backtick;
Runs $string as a command just like ``$string`'.
if( $foo->nm(qr/bar/) ) {
say "$foo did not match 'bar'";
"Negative match". Corresponds to `!~'. Otherwise works in the same way
as `m()'.
if( $foo->m(qr/bar/) ) {
say "$foo matched 'bar'";
my $matches = $foo->m( qr/(\d*) (\w+)/ );
say $matches->[0];
say $matches->[1];
Works the same as `m//', but the regex must be passed in as a `qr//'.
`m' returns an array reference so that list functions such as `map' and
`grep' may be called on the result. Use `elements' to turn this into a
list of values.
my ($street_number, $street_name, $apartment_number) =
"1234 Robin Drive #101"->m( qr{(\d+) (.*)(?: #(\d+))?} )->elements;
print "$street_number $street_name $apartment_number\n";
my $string = "the cat sat on the mat";
$string->s( qr/cat/, "dog" );
$string->say; # the dog sat on the mat
Works the same as `s///'. Returns the number of substitutions performed,
not the target string.
Assigns `undef' to the `$string'.
my $is_defined = $string->defined;
if( not $string->defined ) {
# give $string a value...
`defined' tests whether a value is defined (not `undef').
my $repeated_string = $string->repeat($n);
Like the `x' operator, repeats a string `$n' times.
print 1->repeat(5); # 11111
print "\n"->repeat(10); # ten newlines
I/O Methods
These are methods having to do with input and ouptut, not filehandles.
Prints a string or a list of strings. Returns true if successful.
Like print, but implicitly appends a newline to the end.
Boolean Methods
Methods related to boolean operations.
`and' corresponds to `&&'. Returns true if both operands are true.
if( $a->and($b) ) {
`not' corresponds to `!'. Returns true if the subject is false.
if( $a->not ) {
`or' corresponds to `||'. Returns true if at least one of the operands
is true.
if( $a->or($b) ) {
`xor' corresponds to `xor'. Returns true if only one of the operands is
if( $a->xor($b) ) {
Number Related Methods
Methods related to numbers.
The basic built in functions which operate as normal : abs, atan2, cos,
exp, int, log, oct, hex, sin, and sqrt.
The following operators were also included:
# $number is smaller by 1.
`dec' corresponds to `++'. Decrements subject, will decrement character
strings too: 'b' decrements to 'a'.
`inc' corresponds to `++'. Increments subject, will increment character
strings too. 'a' increments to 'b'.
`mod' corresponds to `%'.
`pow' returns $number raised to the power of the $exponent.
my $result = $number->pow($expontent);
print 2->pow(8); # 256
$is_a_number = $thing->is_number;
Returns true if $thing is a number as understood by Perl.
12.34->is_number; # true
"12.34"->is_number; # also true
$is_positive = $thing->is_positive;
Returns true if $thing is a positive number.
`0' is not positive.
$is_negative = $thing->is_negative;
Returns true if $thing is a negative number.
`0' is not negative.
$is_an_integer = $thing->is_integer;
Returns true if $thing is an integer.
12->is_integer; # true
12.34->is_integer; # false
A synonym for is_integer.
$is_a_decimal_number = $thing->is_decimal;
Returns true if $thing is a decimal number.
12->is_decimal; # false
12.34->is_decimal; # true
".34"->is_decimal; # true
Reference Related Methods
The following core functions are implemented.
tie, tied, ref, vec.
`tie', `tied', and `undef' don't work on code references.
Array Methods
Array methods work on both arrays and array references:
my $arr = [ 1 .. 10 ];
my @arr = [ 1 .. 10 ];
List context forces methods to return a list:
my @arr = ( 1 .. 10 );
print join ' -- ', @arr->grep(sub { $_ > 3 }), "\n";
Likewise, scalar context forces methods to return an array reference.
As scalar context forces methods to return a reference, methods may be
my @arr = ( 1 .. 10 );
@arr->grep(sub { $_ > 3 })->min->say; # "1\n";
These built-in functions are defined as methods:
pop, push, shift, unshift, delete, undef, exists, bless, tie, tied, ref,
grep, map, join, reverse, and sort, each,
Deletes a specified value from the array.
$a = 1->to(10);
$a->vdelete(3); # deletes 3
$a->vdelete(2)->say; # "1 4 5 6 7 8 9 10\n"
Removes all duplicate elements from an array and returns the new array
with no duplicates.
my @array = qw( 1 1 2 3 3 6 6 );
@return = @array->uniq; # @return : 1 2 3 6
Returns the first element of an array for which a callback returns true:
$arr->first(sub { qr/5/ });
Returns the largest numerical value in the array.
$a = 1->to(10);
$a->max; # 10
Returns the smallest numerical value in the array.
$a = 1->to(10);
$a->min; # 1
Returns the mean of elements of an array.
$a = 1->to(10);
$a->mean; # 55/10
Returns the variance of the elements of an array.
$a = 1->to(10);
$a->var; # 33/4
Returns the standard variance.
$a = 1->to(10);
$a->svar; # 55/6
Returns the element at a specified index. This function does not modify
the original array.
$a = 1->to(10);
$a->at(2); # 3
See length().
See length().
`size', `elems' and `length' all return the number of elements in an
my @array = qw(foo bar baz);
@array->size; # 3
See `flatten'.
my @copy_of_array = $array->flatten;
Returns the elements of an array ref as an array. This is the same as
Arrays can be iterated on using `for' and `foreach'. Both take a code
reference as the body of the for statement.
Calls `&code' on each element of the @array in order. &code gets the
element as its argument.
@array->foreach(sub { print $_[0] }); # print each element of the array
Like foreach, but `&code' is called with the index, the value and the
array itself.
my $arr = [ 1 .. 10 ];
$arr->for(sub {
my($idx, $value) = @_;
print "Value #$idx is $value\n";
my $sum = @array->sum;
Adds together all the elements of the array.
Returns the number of elements in array that are `eq' to a specified
my @array = qw/one two two three three three/;
my $num = @array->count('three'); # returns 3
to, upto, downto
`to', `upto', and `downto' create array references:
1->to(5); # creates [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]
1->upto(5); # creates [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]
5->downto(5); # creates [5, 4, 3, 2, 1]
Those wrap the `..' operator.
Note while working with negative numbers you need to use () so as to
avoid the wrong evaluation.
my $range = 10->to(1); # this works
my $range = -10->to(10); # wrong, interpreted as -( 10->to(10) )
my $range = (-10)->to(10); # this works
Returns the first element from `@list'. This differs from shift in that
it does not change the array.
my $first = @list->head;
Returns all but the first element from `@list'.
my @list = qw(foo bar baz quux);
my @rest = @list->tail; # [ 'bar', 'baz', 'quux' ]
Optionally, you can pass a number as argument to ask for the last `$n'
@rest = @list->tail(2); # [ 'baz', 'quux' ]
Returns a list containing the elements from `@list' at the indices
`@indices'. In scalar context, returns an array reference.
# Return $list[1], $list[2], $list[4] and $list[8].
my @sublist = @list->slice(1,2,4,8);
`range' returns a list containing the elements from `@list' with indices
ranging from `$lower_idx' to `$upper_idx'. It returns an array reference
in scalar context.
my @sublist = @list->range( $lower_idx, $upper_idx );
my $index = @array->last_index(qr/.../);
Returns the highest index whose element matches the given regular
my $index = @array->last_index(\&filter);
Returns the highest index for an element on which the filter returns
true. The &filter is passed in each value of the @array.
my @things = qw(pear poll potato tomato);
my $last_p = @things->last_index(qr/^p/); # 2
Called with no arguments, it corresponds to `$#array' giving the highest
index of the array.
my $index = @array->last_index;
Works just like last_index but it will return the index of the *first*
matching element.
my $first_index = @array->first_index; # 0
my @things = qw(pear poll potato tomato);
my $last_p = @things->first_index(qr/^t/); # 3
my $value = $array->at($index);
Equivalent to `$array->[$index]'.
Hash Methods
Hash methods work on both hashes and hash references.
The built in functions work as normal:
delete, exists, keys, values, bless, tie, tied, ref, undef,
See `at'.
my @values = %hash->get(@keys);
Returns the @values of @keys.
Overlays %other_hash on top of %hash.
my $h = {a => 1, b => 2};
$h->put(b => 99, c => 3); # (a => 1, b => 99, c => 3)
Synonym for put.
Like `foreach' but for hash references. For each key in the hash, the
code reference is invoked with the key and the corresponding value as
my $hashref = { foo => 10, bar => 20, baz => 30, quux => 40 };
$hashref->each(sub { print $_[0], ' is ', $_[1], "\n" });
my %hash = ( foo => 10, bar => 20, baz => 30, quux => 40 );
%hash->each(sub { print $_[0], ' is ', $_[1], "\n" });
Unlike regular `each', this each will always iterate through the entire
Hash keys appear in random order that varies from run to run (this is
intentional, to avoid calculated attacks designed to trigger algorithmic
worst case scenario in `perl''s hash tables).
You can get a sorted `foreach' by combining `keys', `sort', and
%hash->keys->sort->foreach(sub {
print $_[0], ' is ', $hash{$_[0]}, "\n";
Works as Hash::Util. No more keys may be added to the hash.
Takes a list of hash keys and returns the corresponding values e.g.
my %hash = (
one => 'two',
three => 'four',
five => 'six'
print %hash->slice(qw(one five))->join(' and '); # prints "two and six"
Exchanges values for keys in a hash:
my %things = ( foo => 1, bar => 2, baz => 5 );
my %flipped = %things->flip; # { 1 => foo, 2 => bar, 5 => baz }
If there is more than one occurence of a certain value, any one of the
keys may end up as the value. This is because of the random ordering of
hash keys.
# Could be { 1 => foo }, { 1 => bar }, or { 1 => baz }
{ foo => 1, bar => 1, baz => 1 }->flip;
Because references cannot usefully be keys, it will not work where the
values are references.
{ foo => [ 'bar', 'baz' ] }->flip; # dies
my %hash = $hash_ref->flatten;
Dereferences a hash reference.
Code Methods
Methods which work on code references.
These are simple wrappers around the Perl core functions. bless, ref,
Due to Perl's precedence rules, some autoboxed literals may need to be
parenthesized. For instance, this works:
my $curried = sub { ... }->curry();
This does not:
my $curried = \&foo->curry();
The solution is to wrap the reference in parentheses:
my $curried = (\&foo)->curry();
my $curried_code = $code->curry(5);
Currying takes a code reference and provides the same code, but with the
first argument filled in.
my $greet_world = sub {
my($greeting, $place) = @_;
return "$greeting, $place!";
print $greet_world->("Hello", "world"); # "Hello, world!"
my $howdy_world = $greet_world->curry("Howdy");
print $howdy_world->("Texas"); # "Howdy, Texas!"
What's Missing?
* File and socket operations are already implemented in an
object-oriented fashion care of IO::Handle, IO::Socket::INET, and
* Functions listed in the perlfunc headings
* "System V interprocess communication functions",
* "Fetching user and group info",
* "Fetching network info",
* "Keywords related to perl modules",
* "Functions for processes and process groups",
* "Keywords related to scoping",
* "Time-related functions",
* "Keywords related to the control flow of your perl program",
* "Functions for filehandles, files, or directories",
* "Input and output functions".
* (Most) binary operators
These things are likely implemented in an object oriented fashion by
other CPAN modules, are keywords and not functions, take no arguments,
or don't make sense as part of the string, number, array, hash, or code
*This section quotes four pages from the manuscript of Perl 6 Now: The
Core Ideas Illustrated with Perl 5 by Scott Walters. The text appears in
the book starting at page 248. This copy lacks the benefit of copyedit -
the finished product is of higher quality.*
A *box* is an object that contains a primitive variable. Boxes are used
to endow primitive types with the capabilities of objects which
essential in strongly typed languages but never strictly required in
Perl. Programmers might write something like `my $number = Int->new(5)'.
This is manual boxing. To *autobox* is to convert a simple type into an
object type automatically, or only conceptually. This is done by the
*autobox*ing makes a language look to programmers as if everything is an
object while the interpreter is free to implement data storage however
it pleases. Autoboxing is really making simple types such as numbers,
strings, and arrays appear to be objects.
`int', `num', `bit', `str', and other types with lower case names, are
primitives. They're fast to operate on, and require no more memory to
store than the data held strictly requires. `Int', `Num', `Bit', `Str',
and other types with an initial capital letter, are objects. These may
be subclassed (inherited from) and accept traits, among other things.
These objects are provided by the system for the sole purpose of
representing primitive types as objects, though this has many ancillary
benefits such as making `is' and `has' work. Perl provides `Int' to
encapsulate an `int', `Num' to encapsulate a `num', `Bit' to encapsulate
a `bit', and so on. As Perl's implementations of hashes and dynamically
expandable arrays store any type, not just objects, Perl programmers
almost never are required to box primitive types in objects. Perl's
power makes this feature less essential than it is in other languages.
*autobox*ing makes primitive objects and they're boxed versions
equivalent. An `int' may be used as an `Int' with no constructor call,
no passing, nothing. This applies to constants too, not just variables.
This is a more Perl 6 way of doing things.
# Perl 6 - autoboxing associates classes with primitives types:
print 4.sqrt, "\n";
print [ 1 .. 20 ].elems, "\n";
The language is free to implement data storage however it wishes but the
programmer sees the variables as objects.
Expressions using autoboxing read somewhat like Latin suffixes. In the
autoboxing mind-set, you might not say that something is "made more
mnemonic", but has been "mnemonicified".
Autoboxing may be mixed with normal function calls. In the case where
the methods are available as functions and the functions are available
as methods, it is only a matter of personal taste how the expression
should be written:
# Calling methods on numbers and strings, these three lines are equivalent
# Perl 6
print sqrt 4;
print 4.sqrt;
The first of these three equivalents assumes that a global `sqrt()'
function exists. This first example would fail to operate if this global
function were removed and only a method in the `Num' package was left.
Perl 5 had the beginnings of autoboxing with filehandles:
use IO::Handle;
open my $file, '<', 'file.txt' or die $!;
$file->read(my $data, -s $file);
Here, `read' is a method on a filehandle we opened but *never blessed*.
This lets us say things like `$file->print(...)' rather than the often
ambagious `print $file ...'.
To many people, much of the time, it makes more conceptual sense as
Reasons to Box Primitive Types
What good is all of this?
* Makes conceptual sense to programmers used to object interfaces as
*the* way to perform options.
* Alternative idiom. Doesn't require the programmer to write or read
expressions with complex precedence rules or strange operators.
* Many times that parenthesis would otherwise have to span a large
expression, the expression may be rewritten such that the
parenthesis span only a few primitive types.
* Code may often be written with fewer temporary variables.
* Autoboxing provides the benefits of boxed types without the memory
bloat of actually using objects to represent primitives. Autoboxing
"fakes it".
* Strings, numbers, arrays, hashes, and so on, each have their own
API. Documentation for an `exists' method for arrays doesn't have to
explain how hashes are handled and vice versa.
* Perl tries to accommodate the notion that the "subject" of a
statement should be the first thing on the line, and autoboxing
furthers this agenda.
Perl is an idiomatic language and this is an important idiom.
Subject First: An Aside
Perl's design philosophy promotes the idea that the language should be
flexible enough to allow programmers to place the of a statement first.
For example, `die $! unless read $file, 60' looks like the primary
purpose of the statement is to `die'.
While that might be the programmers primary goal, when it isn't, the
programmer can communicate his real primary intention to programmers by
reversing the order of clauses while keeping the exact same logic: `read
$file, 60 or die $!'.
Autoboxing is another way of putting the subject first.
Nouns make good subjects, and in programming, variables, constants, and
object names are the nouns. Function and method names are verbs.
`$noun->verb()' focuses the readers attention on the thing being acted
on rather than the action being performed. Compare to `$verb($noun)'.
Autoboxing and Method Results
Let's look at some examples of ways an expression could be written.
# Various ways to do the same thing:
print(reverse(sort(keys(%hash)))); # Perl 5 - pathological parenthetic
print reverse sort keys %hash; # Perl 5 - no unneeded parenthesis
print(reverse(sort(%hash,keys)))); # Perl 6 - pathological
print reverse sort %hash.keys; # Perl 6 - no unneeded parenthesis
%hash.keys ==> sort ==> reverse ==> print; # Perl 6 - pipeline operator
%hash.keys.sort.reverse.print; # Perl 6 - autobox
%hash->keys->sort->reverse->print; # Perl 5 - autobox
This section deals with the last two of these equivalents. These are
method calls
use autobox::Core;
use Perl6::Contexts;
my %hash = (foo => 'bar', baz => 'quux');
%hash->keys->sort->reverse->print; # Perl 5 - autobox
# prints "foo baz"
Each method call returns an array reference, in this example. Another
method call is immediately performed on this value. This feeding of the
next method call with the result of the previous call is the common mode
of use of autoboxing. Providing no other arguments to the method calls,
however, is not common.
`Perl6::Contexts' recognizes object context as provided by `->' and
coerces `%hash' and `@array' into references, suitable for use with
`autobox'. (Note that `autobox' also does this automatically as of
version 2.40.)
`autobox' associates primitive types, such as references of various
sorts, with classes. `autobox::Core' throws into those classes methods
wrapping Perl's built-in functions. In the interest of full disclosure,
`Perl6::Contexts' and `autobox::Core' are my creations.
Autobox to Simplify Expressions
One of my pet peeves in programming is parenthesis that span large
expression. It seems like about the time I'm getting ready to close the
parenthesis I opened on the other side of the line, I realize that I've
forgotten something, and I have to arrow back over or grab the mouse.
When the expression is too long to fit on a single line, it gets broken
up, then I must decide how to indent it if it grows to 3 or more lines.
# Perl 5 - a somewhat complex expression
print join("\n", map { CGI::param($_) } @cgi_vars), "\n";
# Perl 5 - again, using autobox:
@cgi_vars->map(sub { CGI::param($_[0]) })->join("\n")->concat("\n")->print;
The autoboxed version isn't shorter, but it reads from left to right,
and the parenthesis from the `join()' don't span nearly as many
characters. The complex expression serving as the value being `join()'ed
in the non-autoboxed version becomes, in the autoboxed version, a value
to call the `join()' method on.
This `print' statement takes a list of CGI parameter names, reads the
values for each parameter, joins them together with newlines, and prints
them with a newline after the last one.
Pretending that this expression were much larger and it had to be broken
to span several lines, or pretending that comments are to be placed
after each part of the expression, you might reformat it as such:
@cgi_vars->map(sub { CGI::param($_[0]) }) # turn CGI arg names into values
->join("\n") # join with newlines
->concat("\n") # give it a trailing newline
->print; # print them all out
This could also have been written:
sub { CGI::param($_[0]) }->map(@cgi_vars) # turn CGI arg names into values
->join("\n") # join with newlines
->concat("\n") # give it a trailing newline
->print; # print them all out
`map()' is .
The `map()' method defined in the `autobox::Core::CODE' package takes
for its arguments the things to map. The `map()' method defined in the
`autobox::Core::ARRAY' package takes for its argument a code reference
to apply to each element of the array.
*Here ends the text quoted from the Perl 6 Now manuscript.*
Yes. Report them to the author,, or post them to
GitHub's bug tracker at
The API is not yet stable -- Perl 6-ish things and local extensions are
still being renamed.
See the Changes file.
Copyright (C) 2009, 2010, 2011 by Scott Walters and various contributors
listed (and unlisted) below.
This library is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it
under the same terms as Perl itself, either Perl version 5.8.9 or, at
your option, any later version of Perl 5 you may have available.
This library is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but
without any warranty; without even the implied warranty of
merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.
Perl 6:
Scott Walters,
Michael Schwern and the perl5i contributors for tests, code, and
JJ contributed a `strip' method for scalars - thanks JJ!
Ricardo SIGNES contributed patches.
Thanks to Matt Spear, who contributed tests and definitions for numeric
Mitchell N Charity reported a bug and sent a fix.
Thanks to chocolateboy for autobox and for the encouragement.
Thanks to Bruno Vecchi for bug fixes and many, many new tests going into
version 0.8.
Thanks to daxim/Lars DIECKOW pushing in fixes
and patches from the RT queue along with fixes to build and additional
doc examples.
Jacinta Richardson improved documentation.
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