Designing object-oriented software is hard, and designing reusable object-oriented software is even harder. You must find pertinent objects, factor them into classes at the right granularity, define class interfaces and inherited hierarchies, and establish key relationships among them. Your design should be specific to the problem at hand but also general enough to address future problems and requirements. You also want to avoid redesign, or at least minimize it. Experienced object-oriented designers will tell you that a reusable and flexible design is difficult if not impossible to get "right" the first time. Before a design is finished, they usually try to reuse it several times, modifying it each time. Yet experienced object-oriented designers do make good designs. Meanwhile new designers are overwhelmed by the options available and tend to fall back on non-object-oriented techniques they've used before. It takes a long time for novices to learn what good object-oriented design is all about. Experienced designers evidently know something inexperienced ones don't. What is it?Read it over and over again to make sure you're taking it all in. This stuff is hard and you'll be overwhelmed at the beginning. It takes a lot of time and experience to get "good" and even the experts almost never get it "right" the first time, or even the first few times. Don't be discouraged but be realistic: don't expect OO to be a quick win. It's a process, a journey. I'd been doing OO for about three years before that book first appeared - imagine how frustrating those first three years were! Even after the book appeared, imagine how long it took people to come to terms with what the authors were saying and how much longer it took most people to take the contents of the book onboard! "Design Patterns" - Gamma, Helms, Johnson, Vlissides - ISBN 0201633612
Designing object-oriented software is hard
March 30, 2009 · 11 Comments
Ben Nadel had a bit of a "crisis of faith" last week over his ability to learn OOP the "right" way. He's highlighted a problem most people have coming to OO these days: in their search for the One True Way(tm), they are overwhelmed and can feel like failures. It can be a long, hard road. In a comment on his blog, I recommended everyone read the first two paragraphs of the "Gang of Four" Design Patterns book because it really sets this in context. I'm going to reproduce those first two paragraphs here to get you thinking. I highly recommend buying and reading the book.