The define statement performs an assignment, much like an equals sign or the assign statement. However, the define statement only performs the assignment if the variable is currently undefined. If the variable already has a value, the define statement leaves it alone. The define statement is especially useful for initializing permanent variables.


This statement has two parameters:

variable – is the name of the variable that you want to modify.

value – calculates the value that will be placed into the variable.


This statement defines a value for a variable, unless that variable already has a value. In other words, this statement will initialize the variable if the variable’s value has not been defined yet, but if the variable already has a value it will not touch the value. (If the variable doesn’t exist at all, it is created as a fileglobal variable and given the specified value.)

The procedure below will initialize the variables DefaultAreaCode and TaxRate unless they have already been initialized.

permanent DefaultAreaCode,TaxRate
define DefaultAreaCode,"714"
define TaxRate,4.25

In other words, if some other procedure has already assigned the DefaultAreaCode as 323 and the TaxRate as 8.25, this procedure will not change those values. But if the DefaultAreaCode and TaxRate have never been set, they will be initialized to 714 and 4.25.

See Also


10.0No ChangeCarried over from Panorama 6.0. (Note: In the 6.0 documentation it was not mentioned that define would create a fileglobal variable if the specified variable didn't exist at all.)