C++ Concepts



  • is an approach to the solution of problems in which all computations are performed in the context of objects.

  • Instance of class
  • Chunk of structured data in a running SW system
  • Has properties that represent its state
  • Has a behavior:
    • how it acts and reacts.
    • may simulate the behavior of an object in the real world.
    • It exists and is instantiated (created) from a data type created with class keyword


  • Unit of abstraction in an object oriented program
  • Represent similar objects: its instances.
  • A kind of SW module
    • describes its instances' structure (properties)
    • contains methods to implement their behavior.
  • the code is organized using classes, each of which describes a set of objects
  • A class is a logical abstraction.

  • Each object is distinct from each other object.
  • Two objects are different even if they have the same data.

  • Wrapping of data and functions into a single unit (called class)
  • Data is not accessible to outside world
  • Only wrapped functions can access that Data.
  • Functions provide interface between the object's data and the program.

  • Act of representing the essential features without including background details and explanations.
  • Classes use the concept of abstraction and are defined as a list of attributes and functions (methods) that operate on these attributes.
  • The concept of abstraction also relates to the idea of hiding data that are not needed for presentation

  • An abstract operation that may be performed in different ways in different classes.
  • Multiple methods with the same name
  • The choice of which execute depends on the calling object.
  • Polymorphism is the mechanism by which several methods can have the same name and implement the same abstract operation.
  • More details about abstraction here.

  • Objects of one class acquire the properties of objects of another class
  • Reusability (add additional features to an existing class without modifying it)
  • The derived class shares common characteristics with the class from which it is derived
  • The implicit possession by all subclasses of features defined in its superclasses.
  • Inheritance is the mechanism where feautres in a hierarchy inherit from superclasses to subclasses.

  • Contain features common to a set of subclasses

    Inheritance Hierarchies
  • Show relationship among superclasses and subclasses
  • A triangle show generalization:

    Abstract classes and Methods
  • An operation should be declared to exist at the highest class hierarchy when it makes sense.
  • The operation may be abstract (lacking of implementation) at that level.
  • If so, the class must be abstract:
    • no instances can be created.
    • the opposite of an abstract class is a concrete class
  • If a superclass has an abstract operation then its subclasses at some level must have a concrete mothod for the operation:
    • Leaf classes must have or inherit concrete methods for all operations.
    • Leaf classes must be concrete.

    Dynamic Binding

  • Aka Late Binding
  • This is a form of polimorphism.
  • Is the way to determine the exact implementation of a request based on both the request (operation) and the receiving object at run-time.
  • Is invoking a derived class member function using a pointer to its base class.
  • The implementation of the derived class will be invoked instead of that of the base class.

    Dynamic Dispatch
  • virtual
  • Mapping a message to a specific sequence of code (method) at runtime.
  • This is done to support th cases where the appropriate method cannot be determined at compile time (statically).
  • Dynamic dispatch is only used for code invocation and not for other binding processes (like global variables)

  • Creates a declaration region in which various program elements can be placed.
  • Help in the organization of large programs.
  • You can create sub-namespaces or create super-namespaces by joining other namespaces.
  • I understand this concepts as Sets of names (identifiers) common to an application.

  • New data type defined in C++
  • It only have two values: true, false.
  • true corresponds to int 1, and false match int 0.

    General Form of Class Declaration
    class className {
            private data and functions
            public data and functions
    } object namelist;

    Operator Overloading

  • Detailed information here. This link is interesting because shows how to avoid problems when assigning an object to itself.
  • Documentation above do not include ++ and --, this is included here. This is very simple, check the following bullets:
    • This is an example of postfix increment using class complex:
      complex complex::operator++( complex c )
    • This is an example of prefix increment using class complex:
      complex complex::operator++()
    • The same "rule" apply for pre and post decrement.
  • Restrictions:
    • Can not alter precedence
    • Can not change the number of operands
    • Except for the function call operator ( ), no other operator can have default arguments
    • The following operators can not be overloaded:
      • .
      • ::
      • .*
      • ?

    Generalization vs. Specialization

  • Both refer to the same: something is a something else

  • A class/object contains another class/object as its member