drop_field() (PostgreSQL only)

All tables have a drop_field() method, which drops one or more columns from the target. It's a wrapper for SQL's ALTER TABLE ... DROP COLUMN.

Picking up our story from the previous section, points is a table with value type point_3d; and its target, also named points, conforms to it, i.e. the target has columns x, y and z of type REAL with their NOT NULL constraints set. And let's assume that points is currently closed.

Now we want to remove the y member.

We can drop the corresponding column from the target, like so:


Here we passed drop_field() a float mapper, so it dropped a single REAL column; but we can pass a mapper for any mapped type. If it is a multi-column type, then drop_field() will drop multiple columns.

How to open it afterwards

That was easy, but there's a catch. Unlike our add_field() example, which brought the target into conformance with the table object, drop_field() destroys conformance. The state of affairs after drop_field() is:

The solution is to get another table object. Somewhere out in a namespace-but-not-function scope, we define the new value type:

struct point_xz {
    float x;
    float z;
QUINCE_MAP_CLASS(point_xz, (x)(z))

And then, some time after the construction of db, we construct the new table object:

table<point_xz> new_points(db, "points", &point_xz::x);

Notice that new_points shares the same target as points. Furthermore, now that that target has only the columns x and z, each of type REAL and each with its NOT NULL constraint set, it conforms to new_points. So this will succeed:

// somewhere after new_points's construction and points's drop_field() call:;

and we can get on with querying and data manipulation, using new_points.