Generating structs from constructor functions

Suppose one wants to have a bunch of structs that represent API requests. Requests have parameters and it should be possible to validate parameters when constructing the structs. This use case would be completely covered if one could specify a structure by simply providing an appropriate (validating) constructor.

Here is is somewhat contrived example:

defmodule Orders do
  import SuperStruct # hypothetical
  defsstruct market(id, quantity, type, exchange \\ nil, fill_or_kill \\ false)
  when is_binary(id) and is_int(quantity) and type in [:buy, :sell]
  and (is_binary(exchange) or is_nil(exchange)) and is_boolean(fill_or_kill)

  defsstruct limit(id, quantity, type, price, exchange \\ nill, valid_until \\ nil) #...

# Create an order

# Would be nice to be able to use keyword syntax for all params
order = "GOOG", quantity: 100, type: :buy)

# Processing code

case order do
    %Orders.Market{} -> # market order
    %Orders.Limit{} -> # limit order
def process(%Orders.Market{}=o), do: #...
def process(%Orders.Limit{}=o), do: #...

It looks like it should be possible to come up with macros that would parse the signatures and generate the appropriate struct modules (e.g. modules having custom __struct__ methods). I am wondering if there is a library for doing something similar or maybe someone looked into something similar in the past.

I briefly looked at construct, exconstructor and struct_constructor packages and I think their focus is slightly different. It looks like they all provide nice field definition macros but do not aim at parsing/repackaging constructors. Clearly, there are pros and cons to both approaches.

I think you’re looking for a library such as params by @vic. It helps you to validate that the parameters that you’re receiving are what you expect.

Or perhaps the algae library.