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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

RPG's new Built-In Function %RANGE and new Operator IN - IBM i

RPGLE

Keeping the debate aside on whether the RPG is a dead programming language, Most of the recent surveys showed RPG is the primary program language for development on IBM i.

And, IBM continues to provide enhancements to RPG. In this post, we will see couple of recent additions to RPG. 
  • Built-in Function %RANGE
  • Operator IN

%RANGE

In SQL, we often use BETWEEN - AND in WHERE condition to check if a value is present in a particular range (specified using BETWEEN - AND). 

%RANGE BIF (Built-In Function) works in a similar way and used to check if a value is present in a particular range. This can be used to compare the data of any data type (and data we are comparing should be of same data type as the data mentioned in the RANGE)

Syntax:

%RANGE(lower-limit : upper-limit) ;

%RANGE accepts two arguments - Lower limit and Upper limit. Both Lower limit and Upper limit would be considered. 

%RANGE doesn't return any value and should always be used with operator 'IN'.

IN

IN operator is used to check if a value is present in the list of values provided. The list here can be, 
  • An array.
  • Range of values specified in %RANGE.
  • List of values specified using % LIST.
IN operator returns '1' if the value provided is present in the list and '0' if the value isn't present. 

Syntax:

x IN y

This can be used with in IF condition or DOW loop.

We will see an example using both %RANGE and IN to understand better. 

RPG's new BIF %RANGE and new Operator IN

In the above example, 
  • Line - 6: 'IN' operator is used to verify if Packed decimal value 'wNumber' is present in the range between 1 and 15. 
  • Line - 10: 'IN' operator is used to verify if Character value 'wString' is present in the range between 'AA' and 'AB'. 
    • Character value cannot be compared by specifying decimal values in %RANGE and vice-versa.
  • Line - 14: 'IN' operator is used to check the condition on DOW loop. 

Hope the above info was a bit of help to understand %RANGE and IN better. 


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