Advance Java

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Getting the implemented Interfaces

Implementing an Interface

An interface in java is a blueprint of a class. It has static constants and abstract methods.

The interface in Java is a mechanism to achieve abstraction. There can be only abstract methods in the Java interface, not method body. It is used to achieve abstraction and multiple inheritance in Java.

To declare a class that implements an interface, you include an implements clause in the class declaration. Your class can implement more than one interface, so the implements keyword is followed by a comma-separated list of the interfaces implemented by the class. By convention, the implements clause follows the extends clause, if there is one.

In other words, you can say that interfaces can have abstract methods and variables. It cannot have a method body.

Java Interface also represents the IS-A relationship.

It cannot be instantiated just like the abstract class.

Since Java 8, we can have default and static methods in an interface.

Since Java 9, we can have private methods in an interface.

Why use Java interface?

There are mainly three reasons to use interface. They are given below.

  • It is used to achieve abstraction.
  • By interface, we can support the functionality of multiple inheritance.
  • It can be used to achieve loose coupling.

Why use Java Interface

How to declare an interface?

An interface is declared by using the interface keyword. It provides total abstraction; means all the methods in an interface are declared with the empty body, and all the fields are public, static and final by default. A class that implements an interface must implement all the methods declared in the interface.

Syntax:

  1. interface <interface_name>{  
  2.       
  3.     // declare constant fields  
  4.     // declare methods that abstract   
  5.     // by default.  
  6. }  

A Sample Interface, Relatable

Consider an interface that defines how to compare the size of objects.

public interface Relatable {
        
    // this (object calling isLargerThan)
    // and other must be instances of 
    // the same class returns 1, 0, -1 
    // if this is greater than, 
    // equal to, or less than other
    public int isLargerThan(Relatable other);
}

If you want to be able to compare the size of similar objects, no matter what they are, the class that instantiates them should implement Relatable.

Any class can implement Relatable if there is some way to compare the relative "size" of objects instantiated from the class. For strings, it could be number of characters; for books, it could be number of pages; for students, it could be weight; and so forth. For planar geometric objects, area would be a good choice (see the RectanglePlus class that follows), while volume would work for three-dimensional geometric objects. All such classes can implement the isLargerThan() method.

If you know that a class implements Relatable, then you know that you can compare the size of the objects instantiated from that class.

Implementing the Relatable Interface

Here is the Rectangle class that was presented in the Creating Objects section, rewritten to implement Relatable.

public class RectanglePlus 
    implements Relatable {
    public int width = 0;
    public int height = 0;
    public Point origin;

    // four constructors
    public RectanglePlus() {
        origin = new Point(0, 0);
    }
    public RectanglePlus(Point p) {
        origin = p;
    }
    public RectanglePlus(int w, int h) {
        origin = new Point(0, 0);
        width = w;
        height = h;
    }
    public RectanglePlus(Point p, int w, int h) {
        origin = p;
        width = w;
        height = h;
    }

    // a method for moving the rectangle
    public void move(int x, int y) {
        origin.x = x;
        origin.y = y;
    }

    // a method for computing
    // the area of the rectangle
    public int getArea() {
        return width * height;
    }
    
    // a method required to implement
    // the Relatable interface
    public int isLargerThan(Relatable other) {
        RectanglePlus otherRect 
            = (RectanglePlus)other;
        if (this.getArea() < otherRect.getArea())
            return -1;
        else if (this.getArea() > otherRect.getArea())
            return 1;
        else
            return 0;               
    }
}

Because RectanglePlus implements Relatable, the size of any two RectanglePlus objects can be compared.

Multiple Interfaces

To implement multiple interfaces, separate them with a comma:

Example

interface FirstInterface {
  public void myMethod(); // interface method
}

interface SecondInterface {
  public void myOtherMethod(); // interface method
}

// DemoClass "implements" FirstInterface and SecondInterface
class DemoClass implements FirstInterface, SecondInterface {
  public void myMethod() {
    System.out.println("Some text..");
  }
  public void myOtherMethod() {
    System.out.println("Some other text...");
  }
}

class MyMainClass {
  public static void main(String[] args) {
    DemoClass myObj = new DemoClass();
    myObj.myMethod();
    myObj.myOtherMethod();
  }
}