Lesson 4: Object Oriented Programming
In first three lessons, you have learned how to enter the program code and run the sample VB2008 programs but without much understanding about the logics of VB2008 programming. Now, let’s get down to learning a few basic rules about writing the VB2008 program code.
First of all, let me say that though VB2008 is very much similar to VB6 in terms of Interface and program structure, their underlying concepts are quite different. The main different is that VB2008 is a full Object Oriented Programming Language while VB6 may have OOP capabilities, it is not fully object oriented. In order to qualify as a fully object oriented programming language, it must have three core technologies namely encapsulation, inheritance and polymorphism. These three terms are explained below:
VB6 is not a full OOP in the sense that it does not have inheritance capabilities although it can make use of some benefits of inheritance. However, VB2008 is a fully functional Object Oriented Programming Language, just like other OOP such as C++ and Java. It is different from the earlier versions of VB because it focuses more on the data itself while the previous versions focus more on the actions. Previous versions of VB are procedural or functional programming languages without OOP capabilities. Some other procedural programming languages are C, Pascal and Fortran.
VB2008 allows users to write programs that break down into modules. These modules will represent the real-world objects and are known as classes or types. An object can be created out of a class and it is known as an instance of the class. A class can also comprise subclass. For example, apple tree is a subclass of the plant class and the apple in your backyard is an instance of the apple tree class. Another example is student class is a subclass of the human class while your son John is an instance of the student class.
A class consists of data members as well as methods. In VB2008, the program structure to define a Human class can be written as follows:
Public Class Human
After you have created the human class, you can create a subclass that inherits the attributes or data from the human class. For example, you can create a students class that is a subclass of the human class. Under the student class, you don't have to define any data fields that are already defined under the human class, you only have to define the data fields that are different from an instance of the human class. For example, you may want to include StudentID and Address in the student class. The program code for the StudentClass is as follows:
Public Class Students
We will discuss more on OOP in later lessons. In the next lesson, we will start learning simple programming techniques in VB2008