How to pass a function as a parameter in Java?

Using Java 8+ lambda expressions, if you have a class or interface with only a single abstract method (sometimes called a SAM type), for example:

public interface MyInterface {
    String doSomething(int param1, String param2);

then anywhere where MyInterface is used, you can substitute a lambda expression:

class MyClass {
    public MyInterface myInterface = (p1, p2) -> { return p2 + p1; };

For example, you can create a new thread very quickly:

new Thread(() -> someMethod()).start();

And use the method reference syntax to make it even cleaner:

new Thread(this::someMethod).start();

Without lambda expressions, these last two examples would look like:

new Thread(new Runnable() { someMethod(); }).start();

A common pattern would be to ‘wrap’ it within an interface, like Callable, for example, then you pass in a Callable:

public T myMethod(Callable<T> func) {

This pattern is known as the Command Pattern.

Keep in mind you would be best off creating an interface for your particular usage. If you chose to go with callable, then you’d replace T above with whatever type of return value you expect, such as String.

In response to your comment below you could say:

public int methodToPass() { 
        // do something

public void dansMethod(int i, Callable<Integer> myFunc) {
       // do something

then call it, perhaps using an anonymous inner class:

dansMethod(100, new Callable<Integer>() {
   public Integer call() {
        return methodToPass();

Keep in mind this is not a ‘trick’. It’s just java’s basic conceptual equivalent to function pointers.

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