Aspect-Oriented Programming

O’Reilly Network writes:

Aspect-Oriented Programming (AOP) complements object-oriented (OO) programming by allowing the developer to dynamically modify the static OO model to create a system that can grow to meet new requirements. Just as objects in the real world can change their states during their lifecycles, an application can adopt new characteristics as it develops.

Consider an example: many of you have developed simple web applications that use servlets as the entry point, where a servlet accepts the values of a HTML form, binds them to an object, passes them into the application to be processed, and then returns a response to the user. The first cut of the servlet may be very simple, with only the minimum amount of code required to fulfill the use case being modeled. The code, however, often inflates to three to four times its original size by the time secondary requirements such as exception handling, security, and logging have been implemented. I use the term “secondary requirements” because a servlet should not need to know about the logging or security mechanisms being used; its primary function is to accept input and process it.

AOP allows us to dynamically modify our static model to include the code required to fulfill the secondary requirements without having to modify the original static model (in fact, we don’t even need to have the original code). Better still, we can often keep this additional code in a single location rather than having to scatter it across the existing model, as we would have to if we were using OO on its own.

Published by

Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.