I have found myself recently typing over and over again similar code, namely something that looks like {f[#],g[#]}&@list. Is there a 'better' way to achieve the same result?

I have come up with just this alternative Through[{f,g}[list]].

Can you think of a better way to do something like {First[#],Rest[#]}&@list or {Mean[#],StandardDeviation[#]}&@list?

Also, is the way that Through is used, appropriate?

update: I would like to refrain from using Map, or Apply if that is possible. I just want a 'native' robust way to manipulate lists or parts of lists in 'one pass' so to speak.

update2: I am searching for a better, robust way to apply a series of functions on a list, quickly, reliably and with as little as possible typing involved. I don't have a problem to settle for an answer in the negative, or explore more specialized solutions, see comment on TakeDrop[].

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    $\begingroup$ Personally, when I'm in a slot-free mood, I use Through[] a lot. $\endgroup$ Aug 19, 2017 at 19:29
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    $\begingroup$ Single slot alternative: #@list & /@ {f, g} $\endgroup$
    – Kuba
    Aug 19, 2017 at 19:30
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    $\begingroup$ With a bit more short hand: Through@{f, g}@list. That is what I mostly use. $\endgroup$
    – Edmund
    Aug 19, 2017 at 19:32
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    $\begingroup$ It escapes me why Map and Apply are not native methods for manipulating lists. $\endgroup$
    – m_goldberg
    Aug 19, 2017 at 23:32
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    $\begingroup$ @m_goldberg: I never claimed that Map and Apply are not native methods. What I wrote is that I am looking for ways other than using them to achieve the desired result on the use cases I described. Just trying to improve my coding skills by finding new solutions to old problems. I'm sorry if I was not clear about it. $\endgroup$
    – user42582
    Aug 20, 2017 at 6:44

1 Answer 1


Take a look at functions such as MinMax and ReIm - both introduced very recently in V10.1. It looks like historical need pushed for their creation. You mentioned constructs:




which are robust pairs that probably go always together for you. And you implied repetitive usage. In this case why not do define a function or even better a personal package of a set of them as, for instance:

myMeanDev[list_List] := {Mean[list], StandardDeviation[list]}

which reduces your task now, obviously, to just myMeanDev[list]. So as a final bright example, your {First[#],Rest[#]}&@list case is solved as a builtin function

In[1]:= TakeDrop[{a, b, c, d, e}, 1]
Out[1]= {{a}, {b, c, d, e}}
  • $\begingroup$ thanks for the suggestion; setting up a package might be a good idea-I'm still in the process of figuring out what works and what doesn't;I had no idea about the new functionality you hinted at so thanks for that too; I was hopping there would be a better, robust way to apply a series of functions on a list, quickly, reliably and with as little as possible typing involved; TakeDrop[] is indeed an instance of what I was looking for, albeit too specialized but is indeed one better alternative to what I used, so thanks for that too; $\endgroup$
    – user42582
    Aug 21, 2017 at 6:38

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