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This chapter is from the book

Compound Variables

The Korn shell also supports compound variables, which are similar to structures or records in other languages, that is a meta-datatype which is a group of related values, each of which can have a different data type. The syntax for declaring compund variables is:

compound_variable=(
   [datatype] field1[=value] 
   . . . 
   [datatype] fieldn[=value] 
   ) 

For example, we can use a compound variable to manage employee information:

$ employee=(
   typeset name=Allenby 
   integer id=1243 
   float salary=9000.50 
   ) 

The syntax to display the value of a compound variable field is:

${compound_variable.field} 

Here we access the employee compound variable:

$ print $employee 
   ( typeset -E salary=9000.5 name=Allenby typeset -i 
   id=1243 ) 
   $ print ${employee.name} 
   Allenby 
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