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SergiiVlasiuk's solution

to Robot Name in the Scala Track

Published at Aug 31 2019 · 0 comments
Test suite

Manage robot factory settings.

When robots come off the factory floor, they have no name.

The first time you boot them up, a random name is generated in the format of two uppercase letters followed by three digits, such as RX837 or BC811.

Every once in a while we need to reset a robot to its factory settings, which means that their name gets wiped. The next time you ask, it will respond with a new random name.

The names must be random: they should not follow a predictable sequence. Random names means a risk of collisions. Your solution must ensure that every existing robot has a unique name.


Make sure your solution is general enough to be easily scalable for longer names containing more letters and digits. This usually makes for better code quality, too.

Suggestion (this is not explicitly tested): To make sure you always have a unique name you could implement your own cache or use a Stream with its built-in cache.

The Scala exercises assume an SBT project scheme. The exercise solution source should be placed within the exercise directory/src/main/scala. The exercise unit tests can be found within the exercise directory/src/test/scala.

To run the tests simply run the command sbt test in the exercise directory.

For more detailed info about the Scala track see the help page.


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import org.scalatest._

import collection.mutable

/** @version created manually **/
class RobotNameSpecs extends FunSpec with Matchers {
  val nameRegex = """[A-Z]{2}\d{3}"""

  it ("has a name") {
    new Robot().name should fullyMatch regex nameRegex

  it ("does not change its name") {
    val robot = new Robot
    val name = robot.name
    robot.name should be (name)

  it ("does not have the same name as other robots") {
    new Robot().name should not be new Robot().name

  it ("can have its name reset") {
    val robot = new Robot
    val name = robot.name
    val name2 = robot.name
    name should not equal name2
    name2 should fullyMatch regex nameRegex

  // Making this test pass is an optional extra exercise, should you want more of a challenge.
  // It's ignored by default, to make it run, simply change "ignore" below to "it".
  // There are 26^2 * 1,000 = 676,000 possible robot names - you have to ensure that none are repeated.
  // The Robot code needs to be efficient enough to allow all 676,000 unique names to be generated.
  ignore("a large number of new instances have unique names") {
    val alreadySet = mutable.HashSet.empty[String]
    for(_ <- 0 until 676000 - 6) { // as 6 robot names are generated in the tests above!!
      val name = new Robot().name
      if (alreadySet contains name) {
        fail(s"$name is repeated")
      alreadySet += name
object Robot {
  private val iterator = Stream from(0) iterator
  private val first = 'A' toInt
  private val dif: Int = 'Z' - 'A' + 1

  private def handleDigits(plus: Int): String = (plus + 1000).toString takeRight 3

  private def handleChars(plus: Int): String = s"${(plus / dif + first).toChar}${(plus % dif + first).toChar}"

  def generateNext: String = {
    val next = iterator.next()
    s"${handleChars(next)}${handleDigits(next / 1000)}"

import Robot.generateNext

class Robot {
  private var robotName: String = generateNext

  def name: String = robotName

  def reset(): Unit = robotName = generateNext

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