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=head1 NAME

Class::MakeMethods::Docs::RelatedModules - Survey of Class Builders


=head1 SYNOPSIS

  http://search.cpan.org/search?mode=module&query=Class


=head1 DESCRIPTION

There are a variety of modules on CPAN dedicated to the purpose of
generating common constructor and accessor methods. Below, I survey
several of these, summarizing some basic features and technical
approaches, and comparing them to Class::MakeMethods and other
modules.


=head2 Caution

B<Please note that these comments are for basic comparison purposes
only and may be incorrect or out of date.> Please consult the
documentation from a current version of each module for more specific
details.  Corrections and clarifications would by welcomed by the author at the email address below.


=head2 Points of Comparison

In general, I compared the following characteristics:

=over 4

=item Distribution

Is it included with Perl, or on CPAN? Is it being actively maintained?

=item Usage

How do you go about declaring your class's methods?

=item Mechanism

How are they generated and delivered?

=item Instance type

Are the objects of your class blessed hashes, or something else?

=item Core Methods

Does the module provide a constructor and basic accessors? Are there specialized methods for hash-ref, array-ref, and object-ref accessors?

=item Extensible

Can you subclass the package to create new types of methods, or is there some other way to extend it?

=item Other Methods

Other types of methods provided.

=item Emulator

Does Class::MakeMethods provide a drop-in replacement for this module?

=item Comments

Other characteristics or features of note.

=back


=head1 RELATED MODULES 

=head2 accessors

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Uploaded Sep 2003.

=item Comments

I have not yet reviewed this module in detail.

=item Example

  package MyObject;
  use accessors qw( foo bar baz );

=back

=head2 Attribute::Property

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN.

=item Comments

I have not yet reviewed this module in detail.

=back


=head2 Class::Accessor

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 4/01.

=item Usage

Inherit and call function with declaration arguments 

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures

=item Instance Type

Hash.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Cleanly.

=item Standard Methods

Scalar accessors.

=item Extensible

Yes.

=item Comments

Accessor methods call overwritable C<self-E<lt>get(I<key>)> and
C<self-E<lt>set(I<key>, I<value>)> methods.

Also includes Class::Accessor::Fast, which creates direct hash keys accessors without calling get and set methods.

=item Emulator

Yes, but only for the Fast variation; see Class::MakeMethods::Emulator::AccessorFast.

=item Example

  package MyObject;
  @ISA = qw(Class::Accessor);
  MyObject->mk_accessors(qw( simple ordered mapping obj_ref ));

=back


=head2 Class::Class

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 1/00.

=item Usage

Inherit and fill %MEMBERS hash; methods created when first object is created

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures

=item Instance Type

Hash.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Yes.

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and various accessors.

=item Extensible

No.

=item Example

Usage is similar to Class::Struct:

  package MyObject;
  use Class::Class; 
  @ISA = qw(Class::Class);
  %MEMBERS = ( 
    simple  => '$',
    ordered => '@',
    mapping => '%',
    obj_ref => 'FooObject' 
  ); 

=item Other Method Types

Provides a polymorph() method that is similar to Class::Method's "ClassName:class_name -require".

=back


=head2 Class::Constructor

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 11/01.

=item Usage

Inherit and call function with declaration arguments 

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures

=item Instance Type

Hash.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Cleanly.

=item Standard Methods

Hash constructor, with bells.

=item Extensible

No.

=item Emulator

No, but possible.

=item Example

  package MyObject;
  @ISA = qw(Class::Constructor);
  MyObject->mk_constructor( Name => 'new' );

=back


=head2 Class::Classgen

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 12/00.

=item Usage

Pre-processor run against declaration files. 

=item Mechanism

Assembles and saves code file

=item Instance Type

Hash.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Yes. (I think.)

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and various accessors.

=item Extensible

No. (I think.)

=item Example

  header:
      package MyObject;
  variables:
      $simple
      @ordered
      %mapping
      $obj_ref

=back


=head2 Class::Contract

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 5/01.

=item Usage

Call function with declaration arguments 

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures

=item Instance Type

Scalar reference with external data storage.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Yes.

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and various accessors.

=item Extensible

Yes. (I think.)

=item Comments

Supports pre- and post-conditions, class invariants, and other
software engineering goodies.

=item Example

  package MyObject;
  use Class::Contract;
  contract {
    ctor 'new';
    attr 'simple'  => SCALAR;
    attr 'ordered' => ARRAY;  
    attr 'mapping' => HASH;   
    attr 'obj_ref' => 'FooObject';   
  }

=back


=head2 Class::Data::Inheritable

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 4/00.

=item Usage

Inherit and call function with declaration arguments 

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures

=item Instance Type

Class data, with inheritance.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Yes, specifically.

=item Standard Methods

Scalar accessors.

=item Extensible

No.

=item Example

Usage is similar to Class::Accessor:

  package MyObject;
  @ISA = qw(Class::Data::Inheritable);
  MyObject->mk_classdata(qw( simple ordered mapping obj_ref ));

=item Emulator

Yes, Class::MakeMethods::Emulator::Inheritable, passes original test suite.

=back


=head2 Class::Delegate

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Uploaded 12/0.

=item Comments

I have not yet reviewed this module in detail.

=back

=head2 Class::Delegation

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Uploaded 12/01.

=item Comments

I have not yet reviewed this module in detail.

=back

=head2 Class::Generate

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 11/00. 

=item Usage

Call function with declaration arguments 

=item Mechanism

Assembles and evals code string, or saves code file.

=item Instance Type

Hash.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Yes.

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and accessors (scalar, array, hash, object, object array, etc).

=item Extensible

Unknown.

=item Comments

Handles private/protected limitations, pre and post conditions,
assertions, and more.

=item Example

Usage is similar to Class::Struct:

  package MyObject;
  use Class::Generate;
  class MyObject => [ 
    simple  => '$',
    ordered => '@',
    mapping => '%',
    obj_ref => 'FooObject' 
  ]; 

=back

=head2 Class::Hook

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Uploaded 12/01.

=item Comments

I have not yet reviewed this module in detail.

=back

=head2 Class::Holon

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Experimental/Alpha release 07/2001. 

=item Instance Type

Hash, array, or flyweight-index.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

No. (I think.)

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and scalar accessors; flywieght objects also get scalar mutator methods.

=item Extensible

No. (I think.)

=item Comments

I'm not sure I understand the intent of this module; perhaps future versions will make this clearer....

=back


=head2 Class::MethodMaker

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 1/01. 

=item Usage

Import, or call function, with declaration arguments 

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures

=item Instance Type

Hash, Static.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Yes.

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and various accessors.

=item Extensible

Yes.

=item Example

Usage is similar to Class::MakeMethods:

  package MyObject;
  use Class::MethodMaker (
    new     =>   'new',
    get_set =>   'simple',
    list    =>   'ordered',
    hash    =>   'mapping',
    object  => [ 'FooObject' => 'obj_ref' ],
  );

=item Emulator

Yes, Class::MakeMethods::Emulator::MethodMaker, passes original test suite.

=back


=head2 Class::MakeMethods

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN.

=item Usage

Import, or call function, with declaration arguments; or if desired, make methods on-demand with Autoload, or declare subroutines with a special Attribute.

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures

=item Instance Type

Hash, Array, Scalar, Static, Class data, others.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Yes.

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and various accessors.

=item Extensible

Yes.

=item Example

Usage is similar to Class::MethodMaker:

  package MyObject;
  use Class::MakeMethods::Hash (
    new    =>   'new',
    scalar =>   'simple',
    array  =>   'ordered',
    hash   =>   'mapping',
    object => [ 'obj_ref', { class=>'FooObject' } ],
  );

=back


=head2 Class::Maker

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 7/02.

=item Usage

Call function with declaration arguments.

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures (I think).

=item Instance Type

Hash (I think).

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Unknown.

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and various scalar and reference accessors.

=item Extensible

Unknown.

=item Comments

I haven't yet reviewed this module closely.

=back


=head2 Class::SelfMethods

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 2/00.

=item Usage

Inherit; methods created via AUTOLOAD

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures (I think)

=item Instance Type

Hash.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Yes.

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and scalar/code accessors (see Comments).

=item Extensible

No.

=item Comments

Individual objects may be assigned a subroutine that will be called as a method on subsequent accesses. If an instance does not have a value for a given accessor, looks for a method defined with a leading underscore.

=back


=head2 Class::Struct

=over 4

=item Distribution

Included in the standard Perl distribution. Replaces Class::Template.

=item Usage

Call function with declaration arguments 

=item Mechanism

Assembles and evals code string

=item Instance Type

Hash or Array

=item Subclasses Cleanly

No.

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and various accessors.

=item Extensible

No.

  package MyObject;
  use Class::Struct;
  struct( 
    simple  => '$',
    ordered => '@',
    mapping => '%',
    obj_ref => 'FooObject' 
  );

=item Emulator

Yes, Class::MakeMethods::Emulator::Struct.

=back


=head2 Class::StructTemplate

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 12/00. 

No documentation available.

=item Usage

Unknown.

=item Mechanism

Unknown.

=back


=head2 Class::Template

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Out of date.

=item Usage

Call function with declaration arguments (I think)

=item Mechanism

Assembles and evals code string (I think)

=item Instance Type

Hash.

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Yes. (I think.)

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and various accessors.

=item Extensible

No. (I think.)

=item Example

Usage is similar to Class::Struct:

  package MyObject;
  use Class::Template;
  members MyObject { 
    simple  => '$',
    ordered => '@',
    mapping => '%',
    obj_ref => 'FooObject' 
  };

=back


=head2 Class::Virtual

Generates methods that fail with a message indicating that they were not implemented by the subclass. (Cf. 'Template::Universal:croak -abstract'.)

Also provides a list of abstract methods that have not been implemented by a subclass.

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. Last update 3/01.

=item Extensible

Unknown.

=item Mechanism

Uses Class::Data::Inheritable and installs additional closures.

=back


=head2 CodeGen::PerlBean

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. 

=item Usage

Call function with declaration arguments.

=item Mechanism

Generates and writes source code to a file.

=item Instance Type

Hash (I think).

=item Subclasses Cleanly

Unknown.

=item Standard Methods

Constructor and various scalar and reference accessors.

=item Extensible

Unknown.

=item Comments

I haven't yet reviewed this module closely.

=back


=head2 HTML::Mason::MethodMaker

=over 4

=item Distribution

CPAN. 

=item Usage

Package import with declaration arguments

=item Mechanism

Generates and installs closures

=item Instance Type

Hash.

=item Standard Methods

Scalar accessors.

=item Extensible

No.

=item Example

  use HTML::Mason::MethodMaker ( 
    read_write => [ qw( simple ordered mapping obj_ref ) ] 
  );

=back


=head1 TO DO

The following modules are relevant but have not yet been cataloged above.

=head2 Attribute::Property

=head2 Class::Accessor::Chained

=head2 Class::Accessor::Lvalue

=head2 Class::Accessor::Ref

=head2 Class::AutoClass

=head2 Class::Builder

=head2 Class::Member

=head2 Class::Trigger


=head1 SEE ALSO

See L<Class::MakeMethods> for general information about this distribution. 


=head1 CREDITS AND COPYRIGHT

=head2 Developed By

  M. Simon Cavalletto, simonm@cavalletto.org
  Evolution Softworks, www.evoscript.org

=head2 Copyright

Copyright 2002 Matthew Simon Cavalletto. 

Portions copyright 2000, 2001 Evolution Online Systems, Inc.

=head2 License

You may use, modify, and distribute this document under the same terms as Perl.

=cut