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tnetstring 0.2.1-4
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tnetstring:  data serialization using typed netstrings
======================================================


This is a data serialization library. It's a lot like JSON but it uses a
new syntax called "typed netstrings" that Zed has proposed for use in the
Mongrel2 webserver.  It's designed to be simpler and easier to implement
than JSON, with a happy consequence of also being faster in many cases.

An ordinary netstring is a blob of data prefixed with its length and postfixed
with a sanity-checking comma.  The string "hello world" encodes like this::

    11:hello world,

Typed netstrings add other datatypes by replacing the comma with a type tag.
Here's the integer 12345 encoded as a tnetstring::

    5:12345#

And here's the list [12345,True,0] which mixes integers and bools::

    19:5:12345#4:true!1:0#]

Simple enough?  This module gives you the following functions:

    :dump:    dump an object as a tnetstring to a file
    :dumps:   dump an object as a tnetstring to a string
    :load:    load a tnetstring-encoded object from a file
    :loads:   load a tnetstring-encoded object from a string
    :pop:     pop a tnetstring-encoded object from the front of a string

Note that since parsing a tnetstring requires reading all the data into memory
at once, there's no efficiency gain from using the file-based versions of these
functions.  They're only here so you can use load() to read precisely one
item from a file or socket without consuming any extra data.

The tnetstrings specification explicitly states that strings are binary blobs
and forbids the use of unicode at the protocol level.  As a convenience to
python programmers, this library lets you specify an application-level encoding
to translate python's unicode strings to and from binary blobs:

    >>> print repr(tnetstring.loads("2:\xce\xb1,"))
    '\xce\xb1'
    >>> 
    >>> print repr(tnetstring.loads("2:\xce\xb1,", "utf8"))
    u'\u03b1'