Sunday, September 4, 2011

Where OO has succeeded most

I believe he overstates his case when he says it has been difficult to show benefits of OO outside graphics and simulation. But I agree that it’s harder to create good object oriented software when there isn’t a clear physical model to guide the organization of the code. A programmer may partition functionality into classes according to a mental model that other programmers do not share.
When you’re developing graphics or simulation software, it’s more likely that multiple people will share the same mental model. But even in simulation the boundaries are not so clear. I’ve seen a lot of software to simulate clinical trials. There the objects are fairly obvious: patients, treatments, etc. But there are many ways to decide, for example, what functionality should be part of a software object representing a patient. What seems natural to one developer may seem completely arbitrary to another