I've posted a lot here about flow-based programming. I've studied this from a lot of different viewpoints: Messages can flow between object synchronously or asynchronously. Messages can be pushed from one object to another or pulled to one object from another.
For my MIDI toolkit, I settled on a synchronous push architecture using a Source/Sink metaphor. Delegates representing a method in the Sink are connected to a Source. When the Source creates a message, it pushes the message to all Sinks connected to it.
This is fine, but the implementation of this approach has felt to me to be non-standard. If you were looking at my libraries for the first time, it might not be obvious what's going on. So I've been thinking of going back to designing my classes in a more traditional .NET framework style.
What this means is that the Source infrastructure is done away with. In its place are .NET style events. So instead of a Source pushing messages to its Sinks, it simply raises an event. Sources look just like any other .NET class that raises an event.
But this leaves the problem of how to connect objects together. With the Source infrastructure no longer in place, how can sources and sinks be connected?
The answer is anonymous methods. Anonymous methods provide a glue that sticks objects together. Let me give you an example:
Device dev = new Device();
Client c = new Client();
// An anonymous method connected to the // MessageReceived event.
dev.MessageReceived += delegate(object sender, MessageReceivedEventArgs e)
// Delegate the message to the client class.
// Other stuff...
The Application class creates instances of Device and Client and creates an anonymous method that delegate events raised by Device to Client. The anonymous method acts as glue connecting the two objects together.
I think this is a form of the Adapter pattern from GoF, but someone pointed out to me on comp.object that it may be the Mediator pattern instead. Regardless, anonymous methods provide a clean way to connect objects together. The beauty is that the classes are completely decoupled. There's no need to provide any special infrastructure for connecting objects; anonymous methods do it for us.
Last Visit: 31-Dec-99 19:00 Last Update: 19-Jan-17 0:18