Go library for decoding generic map values into native Go structures and vice versa.
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mapstructure Godoc

mapstructure is a Go library for decoding generic map values to structures and vice versa, while providing helpful error handling.

This library is most useful when decoding values from some data stream (JSON, Gob, etc.) where you don't quite know the structure of the underlying data until you read a part of it. You can therefore read a map[string]interface{} and use this library to decode it into the proper underlying native Go structure.


Standard go get:

$ go get

Usage & Example

For usage and examples see the Godoc.

The Decode function has examples associated with it there.

But Why?!

Go offers fantastic standard libraries for decoding formats such as JSON. The standard method is to have a struct pre-created, and populate that struct from the bytes of the encoded format. This is great, but the problem is if you have configuration or an encoding that changes slightly depending on specific fields. For example, consider this JSON:

  "type": "person",
  "name": "Mitchell"

Perhaps we can't populate a specific structure without first reading the "type" field from the JSON. We could always do two passes over the decoding of the JSON (reading the "type" first, and the rest later). However, it is much simpler to just decode this into a map[string]interface{} structure, read the "type" key, then use something like this library to decode it into the proper structure.

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