Course of Raku / Essentials / Built-in functions for printing


The say built-in routine does the following actions:

  1. Calls the gist method on its arguments.
  2. Adds a newline character.
  3. Converts the result to UTF-8.
  4. Sends it to the STDOUT stream.

From the user perspective, say simply prints the contents of a variable to the terminal and adds the newline.

The first step requires some explanations. The gist method is a method that is defined for every built-in data type, such as integers or strings. For such simple types, the return result is a human-readable value that represents the item.

say 42; # 42
say 'Raku'; # Raku

For more complex data, such as arrays or hashes, the gist method adds some formatting.

my @data = 'alpha', 'beta', 'gamma';
say @data; # [alpha beta gamma]

my %data = alpha => 1, beta => 2, gamma => 3;
say %data; # {alpha => 1, beta => 2, gamma => 3}

The say routine can be called as both a function or a method:

say 42;

You can pass more than one argument to say. The output pieces are joint with no spaces between them.

say(100, 500); # 100500

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