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Process Element Wrapper and the Context Verb Object Method Registry

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000107664D
Original Publication Date: 1992-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-22
Document File: 3 page(s) / 132K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Decker, SR: AUTHOR

Abstract

This article describes a mechanism for defining and managing "methods" so that they can be easily found and used. The mechanism - the context verb object (CVO) method registry - addresses a principal weakness of traditional object-oriented programming systems (OOPS): the lack of support for specialized behavior based on specific instances.

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Process Element Wrapper and the Context Verb Object Method Registry

       This article describes a mechanism for defining and
managing "methods" so that they can be easily found and used. The
mechanism - the context verb object (CVO) method registry - addresses
a principal weakness of traditional object-oriented programming
systems (OOPS): the lack of support for specialized behavior based on
specific instances.

      The method registry represents a level of indirection between a
method and the use of that method with one or more objects.  Note:
Under the method registry scheme, objects are self-describing
representations of everyday business entities (e.g., contracts,
insurance policies, and sales orders). A method is a program,
procedure, or action (manual or automated) performed on an object.

      The registry provides a means of categorizing methods in
generic high-level groupings, and it retains the semantic clarity of
class and instance while providing direct support for methods
specialized at the level of instance invocation.

      The method registry supports a process-element wrapper. A
process element (see the figure) is a specific instance of the use of
the method registry for a single method. The method registry provides
common access facilities for all methods registered. The registry's
level of indirection makes easier the update and replacement of
methods, the inclusion of methods written in any language, and the
use of unmodified business processes across operating platforms.

      The primary benefits of OOPS derive from the reuse of their
function. Such systems provide a class structure for the inheritance
of object-class attributes and access to methods (function).
Traditional object-oriented class structures relate methods and
objects by issuing messages to the object, employing inheritance
mechanisms between a class and its sub-classes. Methods defined for
objects of a class that allow inheritance by lower-order objects are
automatically made available to the lower-order class. When
communications between people defining methods for object classes are
good, better use is made of method sharing. When objects become
larger and many people share the object-class structure, the
structure grows because methods are added without being recognized as
replicas or close copies of existing methods. When a required method
is not directly inherited from a superior class (though it may exist
in an unassociated class), either a new class is defined (one that
includes the object class with the method and the object class
requiring the method) or the method is replicated. New method- and
object-classes are often created to compensate for oversights. The
method registry serves to restrict this kind of unwieldy
proliferation and to provide a flexible mechanism for making methods
available...