  # Currying is a process in functional programming in which we can transform a function with multiple arguments into a sequence of nesting functions  Suprabha

2 years ago | 4 min read

Currying is a process in functional programming in which we can transform a function with multiple arguments into a sequence of nesting functions. It returns a new function that expects the next argument inline.

In other words, when a function, instead of taking all arguments at one time, takes the first one and return a new function that takes the second one and returns a new function which takes the third one, and so forth, until all arguments have been fulfilled.

That is, when we turn a function call `sum(1,2,3)` into `sum(1)(2)(3)`

The number of arguments a function takes is also called `arity`.

``function sum(a, b) {    // do something}function _sum(a, b, c) {    // do something}``

function `sum` takes two arguments (2-arity function) and `_sum` takes three arguments (3-arity function).

Curried functions are constructed by chaining closures by defining and immediately returning their inner functions simultaneously.

### Why it’s useful ?

1. Currying helps we avoid passing the same variable again and again.
2. It helps to create a higher order function

Currying transforms a function with multiple arguments into a sequence/series of functions each taking a single argument.

Example:

``function sum(a, b, c) {    return a + b + c;}``
``sum(1,2,3); // 6``

As we see, function with the full arguments. Let’s create a curried version of the function and see how we would call the same function (and get the same result) in a series of calls:

``function sum(a) {    return (b) => {        return (c) => {            return a + b + c        }    }}console.log(sum(1)(2)(3)) // 6``

We could separate this sum(1)(2)(3) to understand it better:

``const sum1 = sum(1);const sum2 = sum1(2);const result = sum2(3);console.log(result); // 6``

Let's get to know how it works:

We passed 1 to the `sum` function:

``let sum1 = sum(1);``

It returns the function:

``return (b) => {        return (c) => {            return a + b + c        }}``

Now, `sum1` holds the above function definition which takes an argument `b`.

We called the `sum1` function, passing in `2`:

``let sum2 = sum1(2);``

The `sum1` will return the third function:

``return (c) => {            return a + b + c}``

The returned function is now stored in `sum2` variable.

`sum2` will be:

``sum2 = (c) => {            return a + b + c}``

When `sum2` is called with 3 as the parameter,

``const result = sum2(3);``

it does the calculation with the previously passed in parameters: a = 1, b = 2 and returns 6.

``console.log(result); // 6``

The last function only accepts `c` variable but will perform the operation with other variables whose enclosing function scope has long since returned. It works nonetheless because of `Closure` 🔥

## Currying & Partial application 🤔

Some might start to think that the number of nested functions a curried function has depends on the number of arguments it receives. Yes, that makes it a curry.

Let's take same `sum` example:

``function sum(a) {    return (b, c) => {        return a * b * c    }}``

It can be called like this:

``let x = sum(10);x(3,12);x(20,12);x(20,13);// ORsum(10)(3,12);sum(10)(20,12);sum(10)(20,13);``

Above function expects 3 arguments and has 2 nested functions, unlike our previous version that expects 3 arguments and has 3nesting functions.

This version isn’t a curry. We just did a partial application of the `sum` function.

Currying and Partial Application are related (because of closure), but they are of different concepts.

Partial application transforms a function into another function with smaller arity.

``function sum1(x, y, z) {    return sum2(x,y,z)}// tofunction sum1(x) {    return (y,z) => {        return sum2(x,y,z)    }}``

For Currying, it would be like this:

``function sum1(x) {    return (y) = > {        return (z) = > {            return sum2(x,y,z)        }    }}``

Currying creates nesting functions according to the number of the arguments of the function. Each function receives an argument. If there is no argument there is no currying.

To develop a function that takes a function and returns a curried function:

``function currying(fn, ...args) {    return (..._arg) => {        return fn(...args, ..._arg);    }}``

The above function accepts a function (fn) that we want to curry and a variable number of parameters(…args). The rest operator is used to gather the number of parameters after fn into ...args.

Next, we return a function that also collects the rest of the parameters as …_args. This function invokes the original function fn passing in ...args and ..._args through the use of the spread operator as parameters, then, the value is returned to the user.

Now, we can use the above function to create curry function.

``function sum(a,b,c) {    return a + b + c}let add = currying(sum,10);add(20,90); // 120add(70,60); // 140``

Closure makes currying possible in JavaScript. I hope you have learned something new about currying!

If you have any question, please feel free to ping me on @suprabhasupi 😋

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Suprabha

I really love to create posts or article on HTML, CSS, JavaScript and React. My goal is to encourage more people to get into tech 🔥 Post

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