Implementing Associations with Ada
Object-oriented programming is a mechanism used to construct modular systems made of reusable components. These systems would be of little use if the objects were all unrelated. This is the reason why the relationships between the objects are one of the major factors in the development of software. Unfortunately, of all the relationships between the objects, the associations are often left aside. Therefore, we investigated a way to implement associations, using a language that does not provide a built-in construct for that purpose.
We first give a definition of the associations and then an implementation-oriented taxonomy of the different kinds of associations. Then, according to this taxonomy, we propose a way to implement the associations using Ada 83. We also show, for a particular case, how Ada 9X can be used. The solutions proposed allow to translate all the semantics attached to associations while preserving the integrity of the system to develop.