Bruce Eckel's Thinking in Java Contents | Prev | Next

In any relationship it’s important to have boundaries that are respected by all parties involved. When you create a library, you establish a relationship with the user of that library – the client programmer – who is another programmer, but one putting together an application or using your library to build a bigger library.

Without rules, client programmers can do anything they want with all the members of a class, even if you might prefer they don’t directly manipulate some of the members. Everything’s naked to the world.

This chapter looked at how classes are built to form libraries; first, the way a group of classes is packaged within a library, and second, the way the class controls access to its members.

It is estimated that a C programming project begins to break down somewhere between 50K and 100K lines of code because C has a single “name space” so names begin to collide, causing an extra management overhead. In Java, the package keyword, the package naming scheme and the import keyword give you complete control over names, so the issue of name collision is easily avoided.


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