Michał Ziobro Michał Ziobro - 1 month ago 5x
C Question

C representing any object (type void *) as the integer number (calculated identifier)

I need to implement hash table (or hash map) that stores keys of any type. So I have used

void *key
size_t key_size
. I need to write hash_function(void *key, size_t key_size) for such keys.

Hash function need to calculate index in the array. So I need in the first place to calculate integer representation of such object. If this will be the string I could get ascii number for each char in the string and sum them up. But I this can be any type (any pointer) i.e. pointer to string pointer to struct how can I calculate such integer representation?

Maybe I could convert this
void *
char *
and then loop through key_size bytes?

static int hash_function(void *key, size_t key_size) {

unsigned int h = 0;
char *key_data = (char *) key;

for(int i=0; i < key_size; i++) {
h += key_data[i];

return (h * 1049) & HASHTAB_MASK; // HASHTAB_MASK = HASHTAB_SIZE - 1 used instead of modulo operation as such approach is faster


The usual answer here is to have the caller of the insert function to provide their own hash function, like so:

void insert(struct hash_table* table, void* data, int (*hash_function)(void*)) {
    int hash = hash_function(data);
    // insert data...

Then you can implement a hash function for each type you want to insert, and pass it to the insert function:

void hash_string(void* data) {
    char* s = (char*)s;
    // hash the string...

// somewhere else
insert(&table, "Hello, world!", &hash_string);