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Bruce Axtens
Bruce Axtens

Posted on • Updated on

REP and almost L in Google Apps Script

It's been quite a while since I blogged about computing (I usually blog about baking) but here goes.

Lately I've been climbing a steep learning curve, trying to get my head around Google Apps Script (GAS). Now a few spreadsheets later, I'm on a trajectory that should see me crash-land on Planet Add-On in about a month.

REPL (read-evaluate-print-loop) has been a big thing for a long time with all manner of programming languages. So why not GAS? (Okay, it's more REP than REPL as the looping doesn't happen, but it's close.)

In my Code.gs I have the following (among other things)

function onOpen() { 
  var ui = SpreadsheetApp.getUi();
  ui.createMenu('Debugging')
  .addItem('REPL', 'REPL')
  .addToUi();  
}

This adds a custom menu to the menubar and populates it with one entry, namely 'REPL' which, when selected, runs a function called 'REPL'.

function REPL() {
  var code = Browser.inputBox('code');
  if (code !== 'cancel') {
    Browser.msgBox(eval(code));
  }
}

Also in there, for demonstration purposes, is a function that totals the ASCII values of the characters in the parameter string.

function TotalAscii(str) {
  return str.split("").reduce(function (result, item, index) {
    return result + item.charCodeAt(0)
  }, 0)
}

Visually there we are selecting the REPL option from the Debugging menu
entering something to be evaluated and getting a response.

I'd like at some stage to put together an HTML form with a TEXTAREA. Maybe after I crawl out of the crater.

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