Professional .NET 2.0 Generics

Overview

The power and elegance of generic types have long been acknowledged. Generics allow developers to parameterize data types much like you would parameterize a method. This brings a new dimension of reusability to your types without compromising expressiveness, type-safety, or efficiency. Now .NET generics makes this power available to all .NET developers. By introducing generic concepts directly into the Common Language Runtime (CLR), Microsoft has also created the first language-independent generics ...
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Overview

The power and elegance of generic types have long been acknowledged. Generics allow developers to parameterize data types much like you would parameterize a method. This brings a new dimension of reusability to your types without compromising expressiveness, type-safety, or efficiency. Now .NET generics makes this power available to all .NET developers. By introducing generic concepts directly into the Common Language Runtime (CLR), Microsoft has also created the first language-independent generics implementation. The result is a solution that allows generic types to be leveraged by all the languages of the .NET platform.

This book explores all aspects of the .NET generics implementation, covering everything from fundamental generic concepts, to the elements of generic syntax, to a broader view of how and when you might apply generics. It digs into the details associated with creating and consuming your own generic classes, structures, methods, delegates, and interfaces, examining all the nuances associated with leveraging each of these language constructs. The book also looks at guidelines for working with generic types, the performance gains achieved with generics, the new generic container libraries (BCL and third party), and key aspects of the underlying .NET implementation.

For those transitioning from C++, the book provides an in-depth look at the similarities and differences between templates and.NET generics. It also explores the syntactic variations associated with using generics with each of the .NET languages, including C#, Visual Basic, J#, and C++.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764559884
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/5/2005
  • Series: Programmer to Programmer Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 408
  • Product dimensions: 7.44 (w) x 9.14 (h) x 0.89 (d)

Meet the Author

Tod Golding has 20 years of experience as a software developer, lead architect, and development manager for organizations engaged in the delivery of large-scale commercial and internal solutions. He has an extensive background leveraging .NET, J2EE, and Windows DNA technologies, which has allowed him to become equally skilled with C#, Java, and C++. Tod has worked and consulted at a variety of companies, including stints with Microsoft and Borland.
Tod has a B.S. in Computer Science from California State University, Sacramento. He started his writing career as a journalist for the Sacramento Bee daily newspaper. Prior to this book, he was also a contributing author for the XML Programming Bible, another Wiley publication. Tod currently resides in Sacramento, California, where he owns and operates Blue Puma Software.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments.

Introduction.

Chapter 1: Generics 101.

Chapter 2: Valuing Type Safety.

Chapter 3: Generics ≠ Templates.

Chapter 4: Generic Classes.

Chapter 5: Generic Methods.

Chapter 6: Generic Delegates.

Chapter 7: Generic Constraints.

Chapter 8: BCL Generics.

Chapter 9: Reflection, Serialization, and Remoting.

Chapter 10: Generics Guidelines.

Chapter 11: Under the Hood.

Chapter 12: Using Generics with C++.

Chapter 13: Using Generics with J#.

Chapter 14: Power Collections.

Index.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2005

    The definite resource on a powerful new language feature

    Until reading this book, I had been nervous about the introduction of generics into .Net. First, I wasn¿t sure how well they would be implemented equivalently across multiple languages. Second, I had been an early C++ programmer and lived through how complicated the introduction of templates made that language. This book has convinced me that generics will work equally well in C++, C#, and even Visual Basic. As a long-time C++ programmer, my favorite chapter was Chapter 3, which presented very cogent arguments as to why generics are not the same as templates. Another favorite is Chapter 10, which presents 23 very specific guidelines for all generics programmers to be mindful of. The book benefits greatly from always showing each example in both VB and then in C#. I¿m sure you could pick up a more general ¿Programming in .Net¿ book and read its one chapter on generics. However, since generics are probably the most significant addition to .Net, you will miss out on learning many of the powerful new ways to take advantage of generics that Golding presents in this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2005

    finally available in .NET

    Generics is [sic] one of the most compelling ideas in any object oriented language. The puzzle is that it was not present in the first versions of .NET and Java. It is only now (2004-5) that both languages comes with this. A little strange, considering that C++ has had templates for several years, and these are roughly equivalent to the implementations of Generics in .NET and Java. Anyhow, Golding focuses on explaining the use of Generics within .NET. The latter encompasses several Microsoft languages that now have this facility - VB, C# and J#. The book makes a practice of giving code examples in pairs written in VB and C#. To broaden its appeal to practitioners in both. He shows how Generics can be succinctly thought of as parametric polymorphism. It takes the elementary idea of polymorphism that every object oriented language has, and extends it to parameterising the input types to a class's methods or constructors. The book gives a pretty thorough rundown on Generics. Including explaining the differences with C++ templates. The biggest being crucially that .NET Generics are instantiated at runtime, while the latter are at compile time. [Golding devotes an entire chapter to the consequences of this.] You can get an appreciation for the extra type safety and generalisations possible in your code.

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