Globals & Descoping

Accessors support two ways of explicitly accessing variables in parent scopes: global accessors and descoping.

Explicitly accessing globals

The top level of a Rant program implicitly defines a local variable scope; because of this, top-level variables will only persist for the duration of the program.

To explicitly access a variable in the global scope, prefix the path with the / character.

Similarly to the descope operator, this method also allows you to override shadowing on globals.

<$foo = Hello from program scope!>
<$/foo = Hello from global scope!>

Local: <foo>\n
Global: </foo>\n

##
    Output:

    Local: Hello from program scope!
    Global: Hello from global scope!
##

The 'descope' operator

If a child scope shadows a parent variable and you want to access the parent variable explicitly, you can use the descope operator.

To do this, prefix the variable name with a ^ character.

<$a = foo>
{
    <$a = bar>
    Shadowed: <a>\n
    Descoped: <^a>\n
}

##
    Output:

    Shadowed: bar
    Descoped: foo
##

Adding more than one ^ character in a row will skip up to that many scopes. These operations are called "n-descopes", where n is the number of scopes skipped: For example, <^^foo> is a 2-descope, <^^^foo> is a 3-descope, and so on.

# Define `test`
<$test = foo>
{
    # Shadow `test`
    <$test = bar>
    {
        # Shadow `test` again
        <$test = baz>
        <^^test> <^test> <test>
    }
}
## Output: "foo bar baz"

While the compiler imposes no explicit limit on descope depth, use cases for large descope depths are rare and it is recommended to avoid them when possible.

# An example of a 360-descope.
<^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
foo>