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350596 (3) [Avatar] Offline
If you run code Listing 8.14 (page 225) in groovyconsole, it works on the first run but fails if you run it again:

Assertion failed: 

assert "IBM".encode() == "HAL"
             |        |
             PIT      false


Apparently (1) ibm.shift = 7 changes the shift value for all strings, not just the string in the variable ibm, and (2) rerunning the code does not reset shift to -1.

Q. Where is

Q. Is

String.metaClass {
    shift = -1
    encode  {-> move delegate, shift  }
    decode  {-> move delegate, -shift }
    getCode {-> encode() }
    getOrig {-> decode() }

equivalent to
String.metaClass.shift = -1
String.metaClass.encode = {-> move delegate, shift  }
String.metaClass.decode = {-> move delegate, -shift }
String.metaClass.getCode = {-> encode() }
String.metaClass.getOrig = {-> decode() }

via some additional expando magic? The text doesn't explain.
Mittie (397) [Avatar] Offline

at the end of the first run, we set the shift value for the "IBM" String to 7.
That shift value has become part of the String and therefore remains in the second run of the script.
Technically, the storage place is the MetaClass of "IBM" (and for that string alone).
You can experiment with this by e.g. adding
println "ibm".encode()
println "IBM".encode()

before line 13 and you will see hal and PIT on the second run.

Thanks for posting
350596 (3) [Avatar] Offline
I see.

It took one more discovery to understand this: Re-running the script reads the string literal "IBM" into the existing string instance -- the one with shift set. Apparently the Groovy console+compiler interns all string literals (like Java does).

And on the question about
String.metaClass { ... }
indeed the ExpandoMetaClass doc says "ExpandoMetaClass also supports a DSL/builder like notation to combine multiple definitions together" (This may be worth mentioning.) But ExpandoMetaClass doesn't have a call(Closure c) method, so I'm puzzled how it does this.

Thanks, Dierk!