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The case for exceptions

When you run a program, things can go wrong - run time errors. And no amount of coding by the programmer can prevent these things - it  [82][ac] Ä s a user entering a string of text when a number  [82][ac] Ä s required, a needed file having been deleted, or a network connection that  [82][ac] Ä s broken that causes probems.

In traditional coding, it  [82][ac] Ä s standard practise to check for as many of these errors as you can throughout your code, and this often results in a few lines of live code being wrapped in 4 or 5 times that number of lines of error checking ... which catch most but still not all of the errors that may occur.

Exceptions are provided in many modern OO languages - they  [82][ac] Ä re in more recent C++ compilers, for example, as well as in languages like Python and Java. They let you write code where you don  [82][ac] Ä t write the detail of checking for each possible error yourself - rather, you code for the working case and you enclose anything that may go wrong into a try block. Then you provide one or more catch blocks to set up actions that are to be taken if the try block failed to complete.

Great system; often less coding, and with a tendency to fail safe if error conditions that you  [82][ac] Ä ve not explicitly coded for crop up.
(written 2006-07-11)

 
Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
C236 - C and C based languages - Exceptions
  [3509] Operator Overloading, Exceptions, Pointers, References and Templates in C++ - new examples from our courses - (2011-11-06)
  [3068] Throwing your own exception in C++, and catching it - (2010-11-24)
  [2622] Handling unusual and error conditions - exceptions - (2010-02-03)
  [1875] What are exceptions - Python based answer - (2008-11-08)


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