Do snowflake UDFs allow recursion?

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Do snowflake UDFs allow recursion?

Alejandro Penzini Answered question May 11, 2023
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Yes, Snowflake user-defined functions (UDFs) allow recursion. Snowflake supports recursive UDFs, which means that a UDF can call itself. This can be useful for performing calculations or processing hierarchical data structures.

However, it's important to note that recursion in UDFs can lead to performance issues if not used properly. Recursive UDFs can quickly consume a lot of resources and cause the query to run for a long time or even time out. Therefore, it's recommended to use recursion in UDFs with caution and only when necessary.

To create a recursive UDF in Snowflake, you simply define the UDF to call itself within its own code. For example, here's a recursive UDF that calculates the factorial of a number:

sql
Copy code
CREATE OR REPLACE FUNCTION factorial(n INTEGER)
RETURNS INTEGER
LANGUAGE JAVASCRIPT
AS
$$
if (n === 0) {
return 1;
} else {
return n * factorial(n - 1);
}
$$;
In this example, the factorial UDF calls itself recursively to calculate the factorial of a number. Note that this UDF uses the JavaScript language, but you can also create recursive UDFs using SQL or Python.

Again, it's important to use recursion in UDFs with caution and only when necessary to avoid performance issues.

Alejandro Penzini Changed status to publish June 30, 2023
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