Explain Return Like I'm Five

Did you find this post useful? Show some love!

So, we can think of a function as a box that does things, right? We put things into the box and the box acts upon them.

For example, imagine a box called "plus". The plus box will add together whatever things we happen to put into it. Like this:

1 ────> β”‚ ───┐            ┃
        ┃    1  +  2      ┃
2 ────> β”‚ β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜      ┃

Right now, we've used "plus" to add 1 and 2. We have 3, but it's just sitting in our box. We want 3 to be able to get out of the box:

1 ────> β”‚ ───┐            ┃
        ┃    1  +  2 ────>  3
2 ────> β”‚ β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”€β”˜      ┃

The return keyword is what allows us to get the 3 out of the box. Now, we give our box 1 and 2, and get 3 in return.

Classic DEV Post from Mar 11

If you could start over from scratch, how would CSS work?

CSS has a lot of issues. Now that we have a few decades of knowledge, how would...

Follow @ben to see more of their posts in your feed.
Valentin Silvestre
Member since Jul 7, 2017
More from @vasilvestre
Explain what really happening when you put final in a class Like I'm Five
Explain Return vs Passing Reference Like I'm Five
Trending on dev.to
Juggling Multiple Languages Simultaneously
Why avoid Ruby's for .. in?
#healthydebate #discuss #ruby
Does your website really need to be larger than Windows 95?
#discuss #coding #technology
How long have you been programming?
Frequent delivery - how?
#discuss #delivery
If you don't hire juniors, you don't deserve seniors
#career #management #recruiting
Have you ever been in a hackathon
Explain JavaScript Promises like I am five.
#discuss #explainlikeimfive #javascript