Object-oriented design anti-patterns

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Object-oriented design anti-patterns describe bad design solutions to common problems. As such, they are essentially the opposite of conventional design patterns.

Many of these anti-patterns are closely related to common design maxims.

The following are common object-oriented design anti-patterns:

  • Anemic Domain Model - This anti-pattern occurs when data and behaviour is separated in the domain model.
  • BaseBean - This anti-pattern occurs when inheritance for implementation is used; that is a class inherits from another class not because it makes sense semantically but because it wants to use methods defined in the superclass.
  • Boat anchor - A piece of software or hardware in the system that serves no useful purpose. WB
  • Call super - This anti-pattern occurs when a superclass requires derived classes to call an overridden method.
  • Circle-ellipse problem - This anti-pattern occurs when inheritance is not used correctly and the Liskov substitution principle is violated.
  • Circular dependency - This anti-pattern occurs when there are two or more modules that depend directly or indirectly on each other.
  • Constant interface - This anti-pattern occurs when an interface is used to declare constants but does not contain any methods.
  • Cut and paste programming - Code reused by copying source from other locations. Increasing the likelihood of errors and decreases maintainability. WB
  • Functional decomposition - Classes that resemble the structure of programs creating using functional languages. WB
  • God object - This anti-pattern occurs when an object / class does or knows too much.
  • Jumble - This anti-pattern describes a situation where "horizontal and vertical design elements are intermixed". This means that domain specific concepts are mixed with hierarchical concepts. WB
  • Object cesspool - This anti-pattern occurs when an object pool is used incorrectly in that the state of objects is not reset when they are returned to the pool.
  • Object orgy - This anti-pattern occurs when objects access each other internals directly rather than going through methods.
  • Poltergeists - This anti-pattern occurs when temporary objects are used to initialize or call methods on more permanent objects.
  • Reinvent the wheel - This occurs when developers reinvent material that already exists. This is the "if you write quicksort ever again you're fired" antipattern. WB
  • Sequential coupling - This anti-pattern occurs when a class requires clients to call methods in a particular order.
  • Spaghetti code - An adhoc structure that is difficult to extend and maintain. WB
  • Stovepipe system - The integration of subsystems in an adhoc manner. WB
  • Swiss army knife - An excessively complicating interface in which the designer attempts to provide every conceivable functionality. WB
  • The Blob - Equivalent to God object, a very large class with a functional structure. WB
  • Vendor lock-in - Occurs in systems that are highly dependent on propitiatory architectures. WB
  • Yo-yo problem - This problem occurs with deep inheritance hierarchies, where a programmer has to keep looking up and down the hierarchy to understand the flow of control of the program.

See also

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