Home Accessibility Courses Twitter The Mouth Facebook Resources Site Map About Us Contact
Why you should use objects even for short data manipulation programs in Ruby

It's so easy to take the "Bull at a gate" approach - to start writing code to do the job in hand without giving thought to code-reuse later on, or indeed to how the work can be used again later. And it's double easy to, for me to take the bull approach during a course, where I'm writing a short demonstration piece that won't be developed further, where the specification of the demo develops as we write it, and where I don't have the time, delegate patience, nor need to invest in adding a good, re-usable set of underlying classes for later use ... simply because (unusually) there is no "later"! Unfortunatley, this means that I can end up with a piece of code thatshows poor maintainabiity, and if there is a wish to re-use or develop it later, that becomes harder, and I may even need to refactor.

Stafford StationI'm describing here the conundrum of "do I use an OO approach, even if my little utility is so tiny that it doesn't naturally take to being object based?" If the initial language is an OO language such as Python or Ruby, then the answer is probably YES, I should always start with the OO paradigm. And indeed on our courses in these inherrently OO languages, we introduce classes and objects as early as is practical.

Enough theory - let's take a practical example from last week's course.

I have a data file containing passenger data from UK railway stations, including the number of passenger journeys made to or from each stations on an annual basis from 2004. (Data file is based on Office of Rail Regulation data which is publicly available - view [here] or download [here]). And I wanted, as a quick demonstration to come up with a list of the top ten stations, growthwise, over the period in question.

Initial answer - [here] - a short piece of code but (frankly) with some messy alorithm stuff in the main code, and not easily re-used.

Object based answer - and extended into a really useful application which allowed me to understand some of the information hidden in the data - [here].

The object based example illustrates:
• Static methods and variables in Ruby
• Defining your own comparator for sorting
• attr_reader - for direct but controlled access to an object variable
• Using a factory pattern
• to_s to make an object printable
• the % method on a string object for formatting data
• returning multiple results from a method call
• lazy operators such as and

(written 2012-06-10, updated 2012-06-16)

 
Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
Q907 - Object Orientation and General technical topics - Object Orientation: Design Techniques
  [4098] Using object orientation for non-physical objects - (2013-05-22)
  [3978] Teaching OO - how to avoid lots of window switching early on - (2013-01-17)
  [3928] Storing your intermediate data - what format should you you choose? - (2012-11-20)
  [3887] Inheritance, Composition and Associated objects - when to use which - Python example - (2012-10-10)
  [3878] From Structured to Object Oriented Programming. - (2012-10-02)
  [3844] Rooms ready for guests - each time, every time, thanks to good system design - (2012-08-20)
  [3798] When you should use Object Orientation even in a short program - Python example - (2012-07-06)
  [3763] Spike solutions and refactoring - a Python example - (2012-06-13)
  [3607] Designing your application - using UML techniques - (2012-02-11)
  [3454] Your PHP website - how to factor and refactor to reduce growing pains - (2011-09-24)
  [3260] Ruby - a training example that puts many language elements together to demonstrate the whole - (2011-04-23)
  [3085] Object Oriented Programming for Structured Programmers - conversion training - (2010-12-14)
  [3063] Comments in and on Perl - a case for extreme OO programming - (2010-11-21)
  [2977] What is a factory method and why use one? - Example in Ruby - (2010-09-30)
  [2953] Turning an exercise into the real thing with extreme programming - (2010-09-11)
  [2889] Should Python classes each be in their own file? - (2010-07-27)
  [2878] Program for reliability and efficiency - do not duplicate, but rather share and re-use - (2010-07-19)
  [2865] Relationships between Java classes - inheritance, packaging and others - (2010-07-10)
  [2785] The Light bulb moment when people see how Object Orientation works in real use - (2010-05-28)
  [2747] Containment, Associative Objects, Inheritance, packages and modules - (2010-04-30)
  [2741] What is a factory? - (2010-04-26)
  [2717] The Multiple Inheritance Conundrum, interfaces and mixins - (2010-04-11)
  [2523] Plan your application before you start - (2009-12-02)
  [2501] Simples - (2009-11-12)
  [2380] Object Oriented programming - a practical design example - (2009-08-27)
  [2327] Planning! - (2009-08-08)
  [2170] Designing a heirarcy of classes - getting inheritance right - (2009-05-11)
  [2169] When should I use OO techniques? - (2009-05-11)
  [1538] Teaching Object Oriented Java with Students and Ice Cream - (2008-02-12)
  [1528] Object Oriented Tcl - (2008-02-02)
  [1435] Object Oriented Programming in Perl - Course - (2007-11-18)
  [1224] Object Relation Mapping (ORM) - (2007-06-09)
  [1217] What are factory and singleton classes? - (2007-06-04)
  [1047] Maintainable code - some positive advice - (2007-01-21)
  [836] Build on what you already have with OO - (2006-08-17)
  [831] Comparison of Object Oriented Philosophy - Python, Java, C++, Perl - (2006-08-13)
  [747] The Fag Packet Design Methodology - (2006-06-06)
  [656] Think about your design even if you don't use full UML - (2006-03-24)
  [534] Design - one name, one action - (2005-12-19)
  [507] Introduction to Object Oriented Programming - (2005-11-27)
  [236] Tapping in on resources - (2005-03-05)
  [80] OO - real benefits - (2004-10-09)

R108 - Ruby - More Classes and Objects
  [3782] Standard methods available on all objects in Ruby - (2012-06-23)
  [3781] Private, Protected, Public in Ruby. What about interfaces and abstract classes in Ruby? - (2012-06-23)
  [3158] Ruby training - some fresh examples for string handling applications - (2011-02-05)
  [3154] Changing a class later on - Ruby - (2011-02-02)
  [3142] Private and Public - and things between - (2011-01-22)
  [2980] Ruby - examples of regular expressions, inheritance and polymorphism - (2010-10-02)
  [2623] Object Oriented Ruby - new examples - (2010-02-03)
  [2620] Direct access to object variable (attributes) in Ruby - (2010-02-02)
  [2616] Defining a static method - Java, Python and Ruby - (2010-02-01)
  [2604] Tips for writing a test program (Ruby / Python / Java) - (2010-01-29)
  [2603] Ruby objects - a primer - (2010-01-29)
  [2601] Ruby - is_a? v instance_of? - what is the difference? - (2010-01-27)
  [2292] Object Orientation in Ruby - intermediate examples - (2009-07-16)
  [1587] Some Ruby programming examples from our course - (2008-03-21)
  [184] MTBF of coffee machines - (2005-01-20)


Back to
The five oldest blogs and the horses mouth
Previous and next
or
Horse's mouth home
Forward to
Melksham - placed 2254 out of 2255. What can be done about it?
Some other Articles
Shell, Awk, Perl of Python?
Learning to program - the if statement. Python.
Melksham - placed 2254 out of 2255. What can be done about it?
Why you should use objects even for short data manipulation programs in Ruby
The five oldest blogs and the horses mouth
Ruby - standard operators are overloaded. Perl - they are not
Ruby - a teaching example showing many of the language features in short but useful program
Ruby on Rails - how it flows, and where the files go
Cruising on the Mersey Ferry?
4347 posts, page by page
Link to page ... 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87 at 50 posts per page


This is a page archived from The Horse's Mouth at http://www.wellho.net/horse/ - the diary and writings of Graham Ellis. Every attempt was made to provide current information at the time the page was written, but things do move forward in our business - new software releases, price changes, new techniques. Please check back via our main site for current courses, prices, versions, etc - any mention of a price in "The Horse's Mouth" cannot be taken as an offer to supply at that price.

Link to Ezine home page (for reading).
Link to Blogging home page (to add comments).

You can Add a comment or ranking to this page

© WELL HOUSE CONSULTANTS LTD., 2014: Well House Manor • 48 Spa Road • Melksham, Wiltshire • United Kingdom • SN12 7NY
PH: 01144 1225 708225 • FAX: 01144 1225 899360 • EMAIL: info@wellho.net • WEB: http://www.wellho.net • SKYPE: wellho

PAGE: http://www.wellho.net/mouth/3760_Why ... -Ruby.html • PAGE BUILT: Thu Sep 18 15:30:25 2014 • BUILD SYSTEM: WomanWithCat