Ram Rachum Ram Rachum - 1 month ago 5
Python Question

Types that define `__eq__` are unhashable?

I had a strange bug when porting a feature to the Python 3.1 fork of my program. I narrowed it down to the following hypothesis:

In contrast to Python 2.x, in Python 3.x if an object has a

.__eq__
method it is automatically unhashable.

Is this true?

Here's what happens in Python 3.1:

>>> class O(object):
def __eq__(self, other):
return 'whatever'


>>> o = O()
>>> d = {o: 0}
Traceback (most recent call last):
File "<pyshell#16>", line 1, in <module>
d = {o: 0}
TypeError: unhashable type: 'O'


The follow-up question is, how do I solve my personal problem? I have an object
ChangeTracker
which stores a
WeakKeyDictionary
that points to several objects, giving for each the value of their pickle dump at a certain time point in the past. Whenever an existing object is checked in, the change tracker says whether its new pickle is identical to its old one, therefore saying whether the object has changed in the meantime. Problem is, now I can't even check if the given object is in the library, because it makes it raise an exception about the object being unhashable. (Cause it has a
__eq__
method.) How can I work around this?

Answer

Yes, if you define __eq__, the default __hash__ (namely, hashing the address of the object in memory) goes away. This is important because hashing needs to be consistent with equality: equal objects need to hash the same.

The solution is simple: just define __hash__ along with defining __eq__.

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