Homework 7 Solutions

Solution Files

You can find the solutions in hw07.scm.

The 61A Scheme interpreter is included in each Scheme assignment. To start it, type python3 scheme in a terminal. To load a Scheme file called f.scm, type python3 scheme -i f.scm. To exit the Scheme interpreter, type (exit).

Scheme Editor

All Scheme assignments include a web-based editor that makes it easy to run ok tests and visualize environments. Type python3 editor in a terminal, and the editor will open in a browser window (at To stop running the editor and return to the command line, type Ctrl-C in the terminal where you started the editor.

The Run button loads the current assignment's .scm file and opens a Scheme interpreter, allowing you to try evaluating different Scheme expressions.

The Test button runs all ok tests for the assignment. Click View Case for a failed test, then click Debug to step through its evaluation.

If you choose to use VS Code as your text editor (instead of the web-based editor), install the vscode-scheme extension so that parentheses are highlighted.



In addition, the 61a-bot (installation instructions) VS Code extension is available for Scheme homeworks. The bot is also integrated into ok.

Required Questions

Getting Started Videos

These videos may provide some helpful direction for tackling the coding problems on this assignment.

To see these videos, you should be logged into your berkeley.edu email.

YouTube link

Q1: Pow

Implement a procedure pow that raises a base to the power of a nonnegative integer exp. The number of recursive pow calls should grow logarithmically with respect to exp, rather than linearly. For example, (pow 2 32) should result in 5 recursive pow calls rather than 32 recursive pow calls.


  1. x2y = (xy)2
  2. x2y+1 = x(xy)2

For example, 216 = (28)2 and 217 = 2 * (28)2.

You may use the built-in predicates even? and odd?. Also, the square procedure is defined for you.

Scheme doesn't have while or for statements, so use recursion to solve this problem.

(define (square n) (* n n))

(define (pow base exp)
(cond ((= exp 0) 1) ((even? exp) (square (pow base (/ exp 2)))) (else (* base (pow base (- exp 1)))))

Use Ok to test your code:

python3 ok -q pow

We avoid unnecessary pow calls by squaring the result of base^(exp/2) when exp is even.

The else clause, which is for odd values of exp, multiplies the result of base^(exp-1) by base.

When exp is even, computing base^exp requires one more call than computing base^(exp/2). When exp is odd, computing base^exp requires two more calls than computing base^((exp-1)/2).

So we have a logarithmic runtime for pow with respect to exp.

Q2: Repeatedly Cube

Implement repeatedly-cube, which receives a number x and cubes it n times.

Here are some examples of how repeatedly-cube should behave:

scm> (repeatedly-cube 100 1) ; 1 cubed 100 times is still 1
scm> (repeatedly-cube 2 2) ; (2^3)^3
scm> (repeatedly-cube 3 2) ; ((2^3)^3)^3

For information on let, see the Scheme spec.

(define (repeatedly-cube n x)
    (if (zero? n)
((y (repeatedly-cube (- n 1) x)))
(* y y y))))

Use Ok to test your code:

python3 ok -q repeatedly-cube

We know our solution must be recursive because Scheme handles recursion much better than it handles iteration.

The provided code returns x when n is zero. This is the correct base case for repeatedly-cube; we just need to write the recursive case.

In the recursive case, the provided code returns (* y y y), which is the cube of y. We use recursion to set y to the result of cubing x n - 1 times. Then the cube of y is the result of cubing x n times, as desired.

Q3: Cadr

Note: Scheme lists are covered in the lecture videos for Wednesday, April 3.

Define the procedure cadr, which returns the second element of a list. Also define caddr, which returns the third element of a list.

(define (cddr s)
  (cdr (cdr s)))

(define (cadr s)
(car (cdr s))
) (define (caddr s)
(car (cddr s))

The second element of a list s is the first element of the rest of s. So we define (cadr s) as the car of the cdr of s.

The provided cddr procedure takes a list s and returns a list that starts at the third element of s. So we define (caddr s) as the car of the cddr of s.

Use Ok to test your code:

python3 ok -q cadr-caddr