Primitive Types
Numeric types
Strings and Chars


This article discusses primitive types in Ela.


Booleans can be created using true and false literals:
t = true
f = false
Unlike many other languages booleans in Ela don't support explicit conversion to/from integer numbers.
One can use prelude functions not, == and <> with booleans:
not true == false
true == true
true <> false
The following prelude functions returns booleans as a result: not (logical negation), == (equality), <> (inequality), > (greater), >= (greater or equal), < (lesser), <= (lesser or equal).

Numeric types

Ela has four numeric types - 32-bit integers, 64-bit integers, 32-bit floats and 64-bit floats. In the current implementation all these types are mapped directly to .NET Framework types System.Int32, System.Int64, System.Single and System.Double. All these types have their special literal syntax:
i = 42 //integer
l = 42L //long
f = 1.42 //float
d = 1.42D //double
Prelude defines multiple arithmetic functions such as + (addition), - (subtraction), * (multiplication), / (division), % (remainder), ** (power), -- (unary negation). All these functions support implicit conversions between these types. Once can also use bitwise operators from prelude with integer numbers: &&& (bitwise AND), ||| (bitwise OR), ^^^ (bitwise XOR), <<< (left shift), >>> (right shift) and ~~~ (bitwise not).

Strings and Chars

Strings in Ela are unicode sequences of characters. In the current implementation they do map directly to the .NET Framework data type System.String. Chars are unicode characters.
s = "Hello, world!"
c = 'C'
Quoted string literals support C-style escape codes:
s = "Hello,\r\nworld!"
Ela also supports a special literal for multiline strings:
s = <[ Multiline
  string ]>
Strings and chars can be compared using all standard prelude comparison operators. In order to concatenate strings one can use ++ function from prelude.


Unit is a "replacement" for null in Ela. Many functional languages use a unit type instead of a null. Unit has its own literal in Ela:
u = () //u now is unit
Unlike null unit is an actual value. You can even apply functions to unit:
() == ()
Unit is useful in cases where there is no other meaningful value that can be returned.