copy a multidimensional array in js.

I’m working on ticket #587, for processing.js.

What I have to do is convert a custom ArrayList function to create a multidimensional array based on parameters passed in. For example:

var array = new ArrayList(4, 5, 6);

would create a 3D array, similar to:

int[][][] array = new int[4][5][6]

This is what I’ve put together:

p.ArrayList = function() {
var array = [],
tempArray = [];

for (var i = 0, aLength = arguments[arguments.length-1]; i < aLength; i++){
array[i] = 0;

for (var i = arguments.length-2; i >= 0; i--){
tempArray = array.slice();
array = [];
for (var j = 0, aLength = arguments[i]; j < aLength; j++){
array[j] = tempArray.slice();
return array;

It starts at the back of the arguments, and copies the array recursively until it’s done arguments[0], then returns the array.

In JavaScript arrays are copied by reference, and not by value, but if you use array.slice() it creates a copy of the array’s values, but not a copy of the array inside the array, those are still passed by reference. In other words, it only works for single, and 2D arrays, anything larger and you start getting arrays containing references to the same data, which is not good.

I’m going to have to find a better way to do this, it must be recursive, and must be based on the number of arguments.


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