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Output of "Look In Map" should NOT be inverted

Status: New

Many common functions include a "found" or "exists" output. Examples include:

  • Get Variant Attribute
  • Element of Set?
  • Config file VIs (Read Key, Write Key, Get Key Names, etc)
  • Chek if File or Folder Exists


Why then does Look In Map provide an inverted ("not found") output? Wouldn't it be better if it was consistent with other similar functions??


This is most frustrating when replacing existing code using variant attribute lookups with equivalent maps. "Look In Map" is pin compatible with "Get Variant Attribute" except for that one inverted output! This has caught me out on more than one occasion...

Chris Virgona
Knight of NI

We (the LabVIEW Champions) pushed back on NI about this when Maps and Sets were being developed.  The rationale for inverting here was to match it being an error (key not found being the error).

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Hmm... In that case shouldn't the Element of Set output be an error too? ("element not in set")


It is not so much the choice of logic that irks me, just the ugly inconsistency with other functions (especially with Get Variant Attribute).

Chris Virgona
Active Participant

Even if you were right, they can't go back for retrofit reasons. There's probably already bunch of exising code using that reversed logic that will upgrade to newer LabVIEW versions so you don't want to create a bug in those softwares...

Knight of NI Knight of NI
Knight of NI

@JimChretz  wrote:

Even if you were right, they can't go back for retrofit reasons

That shouldn't actually be a problem. NI can add mutation code which would simply add an invert after the output if the source VI is from LV 202x or older or when backsaving

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This has been driving me nuts too!


It's most frustrating to me when I feed this output into a case structure, and I'm looking at the false case and thinking to myself "ok....this is not not is found....".  The extra mental gymnastics (while simple) make it quite easy to make simple mistakes.


Any time I wrap these into a bigger function I'll invert the output and just pass out "Found?".  Makes life easier.