[erlang-questions] Strings as Lists

Christian S <>
Tue Feb 19 13:27:12 CET 2008

> I was afraid of the 8 bytes / character problem when I started my pet
> project. However, I keep the data inside mnesia, and I observed that
> mnesia seems to store strings in a compressed form, so I never bothered
> to add explicit to-binary conversion (... myself?)

Yes, when integers are smaller than 255 (a true string() type value)
then the list can (will?) be turned into a vector in the external
representation [1].

A guess is that it wouldn't be difficult to add a 16-bit vector
representation for an imaginary string16() type, but it would be a bit
more difficult to measure if it is worth it. Especially when binary
comprehensions makes it so easy to do something similar but

[1] : http://www.erlang.org/doc/apps/erts/erl_ext_dist.html#8.12

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