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Thread: friend function

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2003

    friend function

    for what reason should I use friend function?
    isn't friend function break the encapsulation concept of class?
    Last edited by zacharya; October 15th, 2003 at 08:48 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 1999
    Altrincham, England
    Answer to part 1: you should try to avoid using friends unless it is absolutely necessary. When is it necessary? Rarely. Probably the most common (and "safest") is if you make a contained class a friend of the containing class. At least, this is the situation in which I've mostly found myself using friends.

    Answer to part 2: Yes. It also increases coupling, so is doubly a bad thing
    Correct is better than fast. Simple is better than complex. Clear is better than cute. Safe is better than insecure.
    Sutter and Alexandrescu, C++ Coding Standards

    Programs must be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.

    Harold Abelson and Gerald Jay Sussman

    The cheapest, fastest and most reliable components of a computer system are those that aren't there.
    -- Gordon Bell

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