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  ANSI Common Lisp   21 Streams   21.2 Dictionary of Streams

21.2.53 *debug-io*, *error-output*, *query-io*, *standard-input*, *standard-output*, *trace-output* Variable

Value Type:
For *standard-input*: an input stream

For *error-output*, *standard-output*, and *trace-output*: an output stream.

For *debug-io*, *query-io*: a bidirectional stream.

Initial Value:
implementation-dependent, but it must be an open stream that is not a generalized synonym stream to an I/O customization variables but that might be a generalized synonym stream to the value of some I/O customization variable. The initial value might also be a generalized synonym stream to either the symbol *terminal-io* or to the stream that is its value.

Description:
These variables are collectively called the standardized I/O customization variables. They can be bound or assigned in order to change the default destinations for input and/or output used by various standardized operators and facilities.

The value of *debug-io*, called debug I/O, is a stream to be used for interactive debugging purposes.

The value of *error-output*, called error output, is a stream to which warnings and non-interactive error messages should be sent.

The value of *query-io*, called query I/O, is a bidirectional stream to be used when asking questions of the user. The question should be output to this stream, and the answer read from it.

The value of *standard-input*, called standard input, is a stream that is used by many operators as a default source of input when no specific input stream is explicitly supplied.

The value of *standard-output*, called standard output, is a stream that is used by many operators as a default destination for output when no specific output stream is explicitly supplied.

The value of *trace-output*, called trace output, is the stream on which traced functions (see trace) and the time macro print their output.

Examples:
 (with-output-to-string (*error-output*)
   (warn "this string is sent to *error-output*"))
  "Warning: this string is sent to *error-output*
" ;The exact format of this string is implementation-dependent.

 (with-input-from-string (*standard-input* "1001")
    (+ 990 (read)))  1991                       

 (progn (setq out (with-output-to-string (*standard-output*)
                     (print "print and format t send things to")
                     (format t "*standard-output* now going to a string")))
        :done)
 :DONE
 out
 "
\"print and format t send things to\" *standard-output* now going to a string"

 (defun fact (n) (if (< n 2) 1 (* n (fact (- n 1)))))
  FACT
 (trace fact)
 (FACT)
;; Of course, the format of traced output is implementation-dependent.
 (with-output-to-string (*trace-output*)
   (fact 3)) 
 "
1 Enter FACT 3
| 2 Enter FACT 2
|   3 Enter FACT 1
|   3 Exit FACT 1
| 2 Exit FACT 2
1 Exit FACT 6"

See Also:
*terminal-io*, synonym-stream, time, trace, Chapter 9 Conditions, Chapter 23 Reader, Chapter 22 Printer

Notes:
The intent of the constraints on the initial value of the I/O customization variables is to ensure that it is always safe to bind or assign such a variable to the value of another I/O customization variable, without unduly restricting implementation flexibility.

It is common for an implementation to make the initial values of *debug-io* and *query-io* be the same stream, and to make the initial values of *error-output* and *standard-output* be the same stream.

The functions y-or-n-p and yes-or-no-p use query I/O for their input and output.

In the normal Lisp read-eval-print loop, input is read from standard input. Many input functions, including read and read-char, take a stream argument that defaults to standard input.

In the normal Lisp read-eval-print loop, output is sent to standard output. Many output functions, including print and write-char, take a stream argument that defaults to standard output.

A program that wants, for example, to divert output to a file should do so by binding *standard-output*; that way error messages sent to *error-output* can still get to the user by going through *terminal-io* (if *error-output* is bound to *terminal-io*), which is usually what is desired.

Allegro CL Implementation Details:
None.

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