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attempt to index a number value (field '?') when trying to write a variable to the screen

edited December 2015 in Questions Posts: 2

I'm trying to learn about tables within tables and how to reference variables within.

The following code errors out with main:38 attempt to index a number value (field '?') which is this line: text(globalIndex[x][y].vA, codX, codY) where I'm trying to print the variable vA located in globalIndex[x][y]

I had this working and then started to do other things. then it stopped, and what I thought I understood, now I don't.

Can someone explain what's going on and what I'm doing wrong?

    function setup()

        math.randomseed( os.time()) -- Generate random seed

        w = 20
        h = 20

        globalIndex = {}


        -- generate
        for x = 1 , w do
            globalIndex[x] = {}

            for y = 1 , h do

                globalIndex[x][y] = populateCell(x,y)


    function draw()

           -- display
        for x = 1 , w do
            for y = 1 , h do

                local codX = (x * 15) 
                local codY = (y * 15) + 300

                text(globalIndex[x][y].vA, codX, codY)



    function populateCell(x,y)
        print("Populating:" .. x .." " .. y)
        local vA = math.random(0,255)
        local vB = math.random(0,255)
        local vC = math.random(0,255)
        local vD = math.random(0,255)
        local vE = math.random(0,255)

        return vA, vB, vC, vD, vE


  • Posts: 2,020

    You are returning a list from the function,you need to return some kind of table. This should work:

    return {vA = vA, vB = vB, vC = vC, vD = vD, vE = vE}

  • Makes perfect sense. Thanks Yojimbo.

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