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Design Fragments Make Using Frameworks Easier

George Fairbanks, William Scherlis and David Garlan.

In Proceedings of ACM SIGPLAN Conference on Object Oriented Programs, Systems, Languages, and Applications (OOPSLA) 2006, Portland, OR, USA, 22-27 October 2006.

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Object oriented frameworks impose new burdens on programmers that libraries did not, such as requiring the programmer to understand the method callback sequence, respecting behavior constraints within these methods, and devising solutions within a constrained solution space. To overcome these burdens, we express the repeated patterns of engagement with the framework as a design fragment. We analyzed the 20 demo applets provided by Sun and created a representative catalog of design fragments of conventional best practice. By evaluating 36 applets pulled from the internet we show that these design fragments are common, many applets copied the structure of the Sun demos, and that creation of a catalog of design fragments is practical. Design fragments give programmers immediate benefit through tool-based conformance assurance and long-term benefit through expression of design intent.

Keywords: Design Fragments, Design Patterns, Frameworks.  
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