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Valid / Invalid Records  RSS feed

 
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Hi Guys,

When the insturctions say

1 byte flag. 00 implies valid record, 0xFF implies deleted record



does this mean that I can use the int value of 0 for a valid record and the int value 1 for an invalid record?
 
Bartender
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Why would you want to store an invalid record?
 
Sheriff
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That's correct! "invalid" as in "this record does not exist, it's deleted, so please don't show it to the user".
 
Roel De Nijs
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Matthew Brown wrote:Why would you want to store an invalid record?


Because that's part of the assignment. If the record is deleted, you have to write a flag to the file to indicate that this record is deleted, so you don't return it as a match when a search is executed.
 
Matthew Brown
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Maybe I misunderstood. I interpreted the question as meaning "invalid" as distinct from "deleted" - i.e. three states. Otherwise, what's the value 1 got to go with it?
 
Glen Iris
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Roel De Nijs wrote:That's correct! "invalid" as in "this record does not exist, it's deleted, so please don't show it to the user".



Why do the instructions say 0 and 0xFF instead of 0 and 1?

I know there are 0-255 possible values between 0 and 0xFF and I think that is what is confusing me.
 
Roel De Nijs
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Yes, it's not an invalid record (as "in wrong data" or "incomplete"). It's just to indicate that a record is deleted and should be ignored when searching/retrieving
 
Roel De Nijs
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Glen Iris wrote:Why do the instructions say 0 and 0xFF instead of 0 and 1?


You can't assign 0xFF to a byte. But if you force it (just use a cast) and just print it to the console, -1 is printed.

I just glanced back to my project and I definitely used 1 to indicate a deleted record. But I don't think that's the most important part of the assignment
 
Glen Iris
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I notice that none of the records in my database file have anything in the validity field.

I was thinking of initially assuming they are all valid and set them all to 1 when I first read them in. I would also write to the db file to mark them as valid records if they are not explicitly marked as invalid

Can you guys please share your thoughts on this?
 
Matthew Brown
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Glen Iris wrote:I notice that none of the records in my database file have anything in the validity field.

I was thinking of initially assuming they are all valid and set them all to 1 when I first read them in. I would also write to the db file to mark them as valid records if they are not explicitly marked as invalid


Since 0 is supposed to mean "valid", doesn't that mean that they are all flagged as valid already, and you don't need to assume anything? And so, if that's the case, there's no need to write anything back (unless the records change).

Again, I feel I'm missing something (and I apologise if I am), but you seem to be making a distinction between having "nothing" in the validity field, and having zero. Surely these are the same case?
 
Glen Iris
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Matthew Brown wrote:

Glen Iris wrote:I notice that none of the records in my database file have anything in the validity field.

I was thinking of initially assuming they are all valid and set them all to 1 when I first read them in. I would also write to the db file to mark them as valid records if they are not explicitly marked as invalid


Since 0 is supposed to mean "valid", doesn't that mean that they are all flagged as valid already, and you don't need to assume anything? And so, if that's the case, there's no need to write anything back (unless the records change).

Again, I feel I'm missing something (and I apologise if I am), but you seem to be making a distinction between having "nothing" in the validity field, and having zero. Surely these are the same case?



this is my question really. Is it safe to assume this?
 
Roel De Nijs
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I assumed all records in the database file are valid
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
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