Orb Programming Language

Importing source files

As your code grows larger, you may want to split it across multiple source files. To import the definitions from a file into your project, use the import special form, providing the file path as a string. We’ve already used it to import some Orb libraries, for example as import "std/io.orb";.

Importing a file will cause all nodes within it to be processed. The compiler remembers which files it already processed, so importing a file more than once has no additional effect.

This is true for the compilation as a whole, and it is not required to import a file if it was already imported from a different file. This means that, for example, you can import base.orb at the start of your main.orb file, and then never need to import it again in any of your other source files.

When calling orbc from the command line, you may specify multiple .orb files, and the compiler will process all of them. The compiler will always process any imported files, regardless of whether you listed them when calling it. So, you may simply execute orbc main.orb and have it pull in all of the files your project needs.

import looks for the source file path from the following locations (in order):

  • current directory where orbc was called
  • search paths given with the -I flag (in order)
  • directory where Orb libraries were installed