Named ParametersUse named parameters to improve method calling syntax. Make programs more readable.
This page was last reviewed on Jan 25, 2022.
Named parameters. This is an alternate parameter syntax in C#. It can result in easier to read and clearer code. Parameters are checked for correctness by the compiler.
Optional Parameters
By specifying the formal parameter name, we can reorder arguments. Named parameters have no performance penalty in more recent versions of the .NET Framework.
Example. We use the syntax "name:" and then a string literal to specify the value of the name parameter. The syntax "size:" and then an integer signifies the size parameter.
Tip You can reorder these named parameters in any way you want. This is a key benefit of named parameters.
Also You can specify names on only some parameters, using the positional syntax for some arguments.
using System; class Program { static void Main() { // Call the Test method several times in different ways. Test(name: "Perl", size: 5); Test(name: "Dot", size: -1); Test(6, "Net"); Test(7, name: "Google"); } static void Test(int size, string name) { Console.WriteLine("Size = {0}, Name = {1}", size, name); } }
Size = 5, Name = Perl Size = -1, Name = Dot Size = 6, Name = Net Size = 7, Name = Google
Benchmark. The intermediate language representation of named parameters introduces extra local variables and assignments before passing the arguments.
Version 1 This version of the code uses a method invocation with named parameter syntax.
Version 2 This version uses position parameters (not named parameters) to call the same method as version 1.
Result In 2019, no difference was found between the 2 calling syntax forms. Named parameters are fast.
Note Please disregard the logic of Method3 as it is there mainly to ensure the method is not inlined.
using System; using System.Diagnostics; class Program { const int _max = 100000000; static void Main() { Method1(); Method2(); var s1 = Stopwatch.StartNew(); // Version 1: use named parameters. for (int i = 0; i < _max; i++) { Method1(); } s1.Stop(); var s2 = Stopwatch.StartNew(); // Version 2: use positional parameters. for (int i = 0; i < _max; i++) { Method2(); } s2.Stop(); Console.WriteLine(((double)(s1.Elapsed.TotalMilliseconds * 1000 * 1000) / _max).ToString("0.00 ns")); Console.WriteLine(((double)(s2.Elapsed.TotalMilliseconds * 1000 * 1000) / _max).ToString("0.00 ns")); } static void Method1() { Method3(flag: true, size: 1, name: "Perl"); } static void Method2() { Method3(1, "Perl", true); } static void Method3(int size, string name, bool flag) { if (!flag && size != -1 && name != null) { throw new Exception(); } } }
0.28 ns [named parameters] 0.28 ns
Notes, implementation. Programs are compiled into a high-level abstract assembly language. For the named parameters feature, the compiler uses temporary local variables.
Intermediate Language
And It then reorders those locals in the argument slots. For named parameters, the compiler infers the regular order from the new syntax.
A summary. The named parameters feature in new versions of the C# language introduces syntactic sugar for method calls. This feature embeds more contextual information into method calls.
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Sam Allen is passionate about computer languages. In the past, his work has been recommended by Apple and Microsoft and he has studied computers at a selective university in the United States.
This page was last updated on Jan 25, 2022 (edit).
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