View Full Version : [SOLVED] Python27: Checking if Var exists

October 13th, 2012, 03:13 PM
So I'm trying to say when a function has been called check to see if a variable exists. If not then define it else just continue. But it seems it continually thinks that it isn't defined.

def DrawObjects(dire):

if not 'Thug1X' in dir(): #if not 'Thug1X' AND 'Thug1Y' doesnt seem to work?
print "Defining var"
Thug1X = 363

if not 'Thug1Y' in dir():
Thug1Y = 44

if dire == 'r':
print Thug1X
Thug1X = Thug1X-3

But each time the function is called the Thug1X var always contains 363 as the 'if not 'Thug1X' in dir():' statement is always true?

The Cog
October 13th, 2012, 03:25 PM
Try printing the return value of the dir() function, and look to see if 'Thug1X' really is in there.
Remember that these test are case sensitive. Like this:

def DrawObjects(dire):

dirresult = dir()
print "dirresult =", dirresult
if not 'Thug1X' in dirresult:
print "Defining var"
Thug1X = 363

If you want to check both at once, the syntax is:

if not 'Thug1X' in dirresult and not 'Thug1Y' in dirresult:

P.S. brackets make the meaning clearer. These two mean different things:

if (not not 'Thug1X' in dirresult) and (not 'Thug1Y' in dirresult):
if not ('Thug1X' in dirresult and 'Thug1Y' in dirresult):

October 13th, 2012, 04:37 PM
dir() will give different results when called within a function, because the function creates its own namespace. I don't think there's a way to bring external names into this namespace -- 'global' was my guess but it doesn't seem to work that way.

Consider defining it in exactly one place, and initializing it to None, instead of leaving it undefined until you use it. Then it's easy to do

def DrawObjects(dire):
if Thug1X == None:
print "Defining var"
Thug1X = 363

... etc

October 13th, 2012, 04:41 PM
you have to define the variable as global if you want to modify it
else it creates a new one:

def DrawObjects(dire):
global Thug1X
if 'Thug1X' not in dir():
Thug1X = 1

but this really smells like a bad design

October 13th, 2012, 04:58 PM
@MadCow: That was my thought too, but I tested it and "global" doesn't add the name to the list returned by dir(). Creating a closure does, though; the following will print ['var']:

def foo():
var = 'hello, world'
def _bar():
return _bar

bar = foo()

In agreement with you on the second point, though.

October 13th, 2012, 06:52 PM
true you can't use dir, but probably globals() would work

as we are iterating ugly solutions to a problem you shouldn't really have, here another:

def DrawObjects(dire):
global Thug1X
Thug1X = Thug1X
except NameError:
Thug1X = 1