makingthematrix / signals3   1.1.1

GNU General Public License v3.0 only GitHub

A lightweight event streaming library for Scala 3

Scala versions: 3.x


Scala CI signals3 Scala version support

Signals3 API documentation

This is a lightweight event streaming library for Scala. It's based on Wire Signals. Wire Signals was used extensively in the Wire Android client app - the biggest Scala project for Android, as far as I know - in everything from fetching and decoding data from another device to updating the list of messages displayed in a conversation. In new apps, it can be of use for the same tasks, as well as - if you write an Android app in Scala by chance, or maybe a desktop app in JavaFX/ScalaFX - Signals3 may help you to communicate between the UI and the background thread. Details below.

Main features

  • Event streams
  • Signals: event streams with internal values
  • Abstractions for easy data transfer between execution contexts
  • An implementation of (sometimes) closeable futures
  • Methods to work with event streams and signals in a way similar to standard Scala collections
  • Generators: streams that can generate events and signals that can compute their new updates in regular (or variable) intervals.

How to use


  libraryDependencies += "io.github.makingthematrix" %% "signals3" % "1.1.1"






compile group: 'io.github.makingthematrix', name: 'signals3_3', version: '1.1.1'


In short, you can create a SourceSignal somewhere in the code:

val intSignal = Signal(1) // SourceSignal[Int] with the initial value 1
val strSignal = Signal[String]() // initially empty SourceSignal[String]

and subscribe it in another place:

intSignal.foreach { number => println(s"number: $number") }
strSignal.foreach { str => println(s"str: $str") }

Now every time you publish something to the signals, the functions you provided above will be executed, just as in case of a regular stream...

scala> intSignal ! 2
number: 2

... but if you happen to subscribe to a signal after an event was published, the subscriber will still have access to that event. On the moment of subscription the provided function will be executed with the last event in the signal if there is one. So at this point in the example subscribing to intSignal will result in the number being displayed:

> intSignal.foreach { number => println(s"number: $number") }
number: 2

but subscribing to strSignal will not display anything, because strSignal is still empty. Or, if you simply don't need that functionality, you can use a standard Stream instead.

You can also of course map and flatMap signals, zip them, throttle, fold, or make any future or a stream into one. With a bit of Scala magic you can even do for-comprehensions:

val fooSignal = for {
 number <- intSignal
 str    <- if (number % 3 == 0) Signal.const("Foo") else strSignal
} yield str

Communication between execution contexts

Every time you define a foreach method on a stream or a signal, you can specify the execution context in which it will work. Since Signals3 started as an event streaming library for Android, it implements a utility class UiDispatchQueue to help you set up communication between the default execution context (Threading.defaultContext) and a secondary one, usually associated with GUI.

On platforms such as Android or JavaFX, a Runnable task that involves changes to the app's GUI requires to be run in that secondary, special execution context - otherwise it will either not work, will result in errors, or may even crash the app. Your platform should provide you with a method which you can call with the given task to execute it properly. If that method is of the type Runnable => Unit (or if you can wrap it in a function of this type) you can pass it to UiDispatchQueue in the app's initialization code. Later, UiDispatchQueue will let you use extension methods .onUi on event streams and signals. They work exactly like .foreach but they will run the subscriber code in your GUI platform execution context.

Example Android initialization

import android.os.{Handler, Looper}
import io.github.makingthematrix.signals3.ui.UiDispatchQueue

val handler = new Handler(Looper.getMainLooper)

Example JavaFX initialization

import javafx.application.Platform
import io.github.makingthematrix.signals3.ui.UiDispatchQueue


Usage in all cases:

import io.github.makingthematrix.signals3.ui.UiDispatchQueue.*

val signal = Signal(false) // create a new source signal
signal.onUi { value => ... } // define a block of code that will run on the UI thread
signal ! true // update the value of the signal from any other place in the code
// or this is how you can run any piece of code on the UI thread
Future { ... }(Ui)

If you want to know more


This library is a result of work of many programmers who developed Wire Android over the years. My thanks go especially to:

Thanks, guys. I couldn't do it without you.