Erlang prints (some) lists as strings
Thu Nov 11 01:19:08 CET 1999
>That's about what it will take, since Erlang doesn't have a "character" data
>type, and the shell has to guess whether any given integer in a list is
>meant to be a number or text.
Or more precisely, the shell uses the 'p' (or to be pedantic, 'P')
control character(*), that asks for the guessing, when printing its
output - you don't have to do that in your program:
(*): From the io(3) man page:
w: Writes data with the standard syntax. This is
used to output Erlang terms. Atoms are printed
within quotes if they contain embedded non-
printable characters, and floats are printed in
the default g format.
p: Writes the data with standard syntax in the same
way as ~w, but breaks terms whose printed
representation is longer than one line into many
lines and indents each line sensibly. It also
tries to detect lists of printable characters and
to output these as strings.
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