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Breaking Change in dart:io Path() Class Makes it Easier to Deal with Windows Paths


Some changes are coming to the dart.io Path class constructor that will help make Windows paths platform agnostic. William Hesse gives us the details

I have finally changed the new Path(String path) constructor to automatically convert Windows paths into platform-independent paths, the way that new Path.fromNative(String path) does now.  I found no cases where code needed to create a path without doing this conversion on the Windows platform, so we thought we should make it the default.  It is fine if this conversion is done more than once to a path, since it has no effect the second time.

The reverse of this conversion is done by the toNativePath() method of Path, which returns a string which follows the conventions of the platform.  On Windows, slashes are changed back to backslashes, an initial slash is removed from a drive letter, if present, and a network share starting with two backslashes has them restored.

The previous functionality of new Path() has been renamed to new Path.raw(String path), but we are considering removing it, since it seems to be more confusing than useful.  If anyone knows of a use case for it, please chime in.

.  Note that these are the bleeding_edge API docs, and not the slightly more stable Latest API docs at http://api.dartlang.org/docs/releases/latest/

As always, we invite you to join our Dart mailing list, ask questions on Stack Overflow, or file feature requests on dartbug.com

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Const, Static, Final, Oh my!

Posted by Seth Ladd

(This is an "oldie but a goodie" misc@dartlang.org post originally written by Bob Nystrom. It is being posted here as the explanations still ring true.)

Bob writes:


"static", "final", and "const" mean entirely distinct things in Dart:

"static" means a member is available on the class itself instead of on instances of the class. That's all it means, and it isn't used for anything else. static modifies *members*.

"final" means single-assignment: a final variable or field *must* have an initializer. Once assigned a value, a final variable's value cannot be changed. final modifies *variables*.

"const" has a meaning that's a bit more complex and subtle in Dart. const modifies *values*. You can use it when creating collections, like const [1, 2, 3], and when constructing objects (instead of new) like const Point(2, 3). Here, const means that the object's entire deep state can be determ…