/** This file defines and demonstrates two necessary components for
 * the hash table lab for CS 2150.  The first is the use of the
 * getWordInGrid() function, which is used for retrieving a word in a
 * grid of letters in one of the cardinal 8 directions (north,
 * south-east, etc).  The second is the use of file streams to read in
 * input from a file, specifically one formatted as per the lab 6
 * guidelines.
 * Written by Aaron Bloomfield, 2009

#include <iostream>
#include <fstream>
#include <string>
using namespace std;

// We create a 2-D array of some big size, and assume that the grid
// read in will be less than this size (a valid assumption for lab 6)
#define MAXROWS 500
#define MAXCOLS 500
char grid[MAXROWS][MAXCOLS];

// Forward declarations
bool readInGrid(string filename, int& rows, int& cols);
string getWordInGrid(int startRow, int startCol, int dir, int len,
                     int numRows, int numCols);

/** The main() function shows how to call both the readInGrid()
 * function as well as the getWordInGrid() function.
int main() {
    // to hold the number of rows and cols in the input file
    int rows, cols;

    // attempt to read in the file
    bool result = readInGrid("5x8.grid.txt", rows, cols);
    // if there is an error, report it
    if (!result) {
        cout << "Error reading in file!" << endl;
        return 1;

    // Get a word (of length 10), starting at position (2,2) in the
    // array, in each of the 8 directions
    cout << endl;
    for (int i = 0; i < 8; i++) {
        cout << i << ": " << getWordInGrid(2, 2, i, 10, rows, cols) << endl;

    return 0;

/** This function will read in a grid file, as per the format in the
 * CS 2150 lab 6 document, into a global grid[][] array.  It uses C++
 * file streams, and thus requires the the <fstream> #include header.
 * @return true or false, depending on whether the file was
 *         successfully opened.
 * @param filename The file name to read in -- it's assumed to be in
 *                 the file format described in the lab document.
 * @param rows The number of rows as specified in the input file;
 *             as this is a reference, it is set by the function.
 * @param cols The number of columns as specified in the input file;
 *             as this is a reference, it is set by the function.
bool readInGrid(string filename, int& rows, int& cols) {
    // try to open the file
    ifstream file(filename);
    // upon an error, return false
    if (!file.is_open()) {
        return false;

    // first comes the number of rows
    file >> rows;
    cout << "There are " << rows << " rows." << endl;

    // then the columns
    file >> cols;
    cout << "There are " << cols << " cols." << endl;

    // and finally the grid itself
    string data;
    file >> data;

    // close the file

    // convert the string read in to the 2-D grid format into the
    // grid[][] array.
    // In the process, we'll print the grid to the screen as well.
    int pos = 0; // the current position in the input data
    for (int r = 0; r < rows; r++) {
        for (int c = 0; c < cols; c++) {
            grid[r][c] = data[pos++];
            cout << grid[r][c];
        cout << endl;
    return true;

/** This function will retrieve a word in a grid of letters in a given
 * direction.  If the end of the grid is encountered before the length
 * of the desired string is reached, then a shorter string will be
 * returned.  The data is retrieved from a global char grid[][]
 * array, which is assumed to be defined (and in scope).  NOTE: The
 * return value is a static string variable (for efficiency
 * reasons), so a successive return value will overwrite a previous
 * return value.
 * @return A STATIC string containing the letters in the provided direction.
 * @param startRow The starting (row,col) position to find the word.
 * @param startCol The starting (row,col) position to find the word.
 * @param dir The direction to move: 0 is north (upwards), 1 is
 *            northeast, and it rotates around clockwise until it
 *            reaches 7 for northwest.
 * @param len The desired length of the string to return (assuming
 *            the edge of the grid is not reached--if the edge of the
 *            grid is reached, it will return as many characters as
 *            possible up to the edge of the grid, so the returned
 *            string may not have the same length as this parameter
 *            indicates).
 * @param numRows The number of rows in the global char grid[][]
 *                array.
 * @param numCols The number of columns in the global char grid[][]
 *                array.
string getWordInGrid (int startRow, int startCol, int dir, int len,
                      int numRows, int numCols) {
    // the static-ness of this variable prevents it from being
    // re-declared upon each function invocation.  It also prevents it
    // from being deallocated between invocations.  It's probably not
    // good programming practice, but it's an efficient means to return
    // a value.
    static string output;
    output.clear(); // Since it's static we need to clear it
    output.reserve(256); // Can't set capacity in the constructor so do it the first time here

    // the position in the output array, the current row, and the
    // current column
    int r = startRow, c = startCol;
    // iterate once for each character in the output
    for (int i = 0; i < len; i++) {
        // if the current row or column is out of bounds, then break
        if (c >= numCols || r >= numRows || r < 0 || c < 0) {

        // set the next character in the output array to the next letter
        // in the grid
        output += grid[r][c];

        // move in the direction specified by the parameter
        switch (dir) { // assumes grid[0][0] is in the upper-left
            case 0:
                break; // north
            case 1:
                break; // north-east
            case 2:
                break; // east
            case 3:
                break; // south-east
            case 4:
                break; // south
            case 5:
                break; // south-west
            case 6:
                break; // west
            case 7:
                break; // north-west

    return output;