, Volume 21, Issue 3, pp 239-250

Using circular programs to eliminate multiple traversals of data

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Summary

This paper describes a technique for transforming functional programs that repeatedly traverse a data structure into more efficient alternatives that do not. The transformation makes essential use of lazy evaluation and local recursion (such as provided by letrec, or its equivalent) to build a circular program that, on one pass over the structure, determines the effects of the individual traversals and then combines them.