Eiffel Glossary

Revision as of 13:27, 19 November 2006 by Gmc444 (Talk | contribs)

Eiffel uses a precisely defined terminology. That terminology sometimes sounds strange to programmers used to other languages, but it's only because (1) there has been a systematic effort to classify object-oriented concepts in a logical way; (2) some of the terms predate terminology that is used in other languages. You will see, however, that behind every choice of term there is a carefully devised rationale.

Please try to keep the list sorted alphabetically.

A property of a class that denotes a field present in each instance of the class.
A group of logically related classes that have something in common. The corresponding class texts are generally stored in files of a single directory.
An operation (command or query) applicable to all instances of the class, and specified in the class text. Routines and attributes are examples of features.
In a class, a feature with an associated algorithm that returns a result. A pure function or query does not affect the state of its object.
A group of related classes, devised to cover all the facilities needed in a certain application areas. A library is made of a number of clusters. For example a math library may be composed of clusters devoted to random number generation, linear algebra, integration, etc.
In a class, a feature with an associated algorithm, so that calling the feature executes that algorithm. a Routine takes zero or more arguments. It does not return a result directly but often changes the state of the object associated with the Routine feature.