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Meaning of CONTINUATION PASSING STYLE

 
Computing Dictionary
 
 Definition: 
  1. (CPS) A semantically clean language with continuations used as an intermediate language for scheme and the sml/nj compiler.

    ["Rabbit: A Compiler for Scheme", G.L. Steele, AI-TR-474, MIT (May 1978)].

    ["Compiling With Continuations", A. Appel, Cambridge U Press 1992].

  2. (CPS) A style of programming in which every user function f takes an extra argument c known as a continuation. Whenever f would normally return a result r to its caller, it instead returns the result of applying the continuation to r. The continuation thus represents the whole of the rest of the computation. Some examples:

     normal (direct style)    -->        continuation passing
     square x = x * x                square x k = k (x*x)
     g (square 23)                        square 23 g
     (square 3) + 1                        square 3 ( \ s . s+1 )

 

 

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