Just as architects design buildings by employing the collective wisdom of their profession, so should programmers design programs. Our field is younger than architecture, and our collective wisdom is considerably sparser. We have learned that structured programming produces programs that are easier than unstructured programs to understand, test, debug, modify and even prove correct in a mathematical sense.
Figure 5.20 uses UML activity diagrams to summarize Java's control statements. The initial and final states indicate the single entry point and the single exit point of each control statement. Arbitrarily connecting individual symbols in an activity diagram can lead to unstructured programs. Therefore, the programming profession has chosen a limited set of control statements that can be combined in only two simple ways to build structured programs.
Figure 5.20. Java's single-entry/single-exit sequence, selection and repetition statements.
(This item is displayed on page 209 in the print version)
For simplicity, only single-entry/single-exit control statements are usedthere is only one way to enter and only one way to exit each control statement. Connecting control statements in sequence to form structured programs is simple. The final state of one control statement is connected to the initial state of the next control statementthat is, the control statements are placed one after another in a program in sequence. We call this "control-statement stacking." The rules for forming structured programs also allow for control statements to be nested.
Figure 5.21 shows the rules for forming structured programs. The rules assume that action states may be used to indicate any action. The rules also assume that we begin with the simplest activity diagram (Fig. 5.22) consisting of only an initial state, an action state, a final state and transition arrows.
Rules for Forming Structured Programs
Figure 5.22. Simplest activity diagram.
(This item is displayed on page 210 in the print version)
Applying the rules in Fig. 5.21 always results in a properly structured activity diagram with a neat, building-block appearance. For example, repeatedly applying rule 2 to the simplest activity diagram results in an activity diagram containing many action states in sequence (Fig. 5.23). Rule 2 generates a stack of control statements, so let us call rule 2 the stacking rule. [Note: The vertical dashed lines in Fig. 5.23 are not part of the UML. We use them to separate the four activity diagrams that demonstrate rule 2 of Fig. 5.21 being applied.]
Figure 5.23. Repeatedly applying the stacking rule (rule 2) of Fig. 5.21 to the simplest activity diagram.
(This item is displayed on page 211 in the print version)
Rule 3 is called the nesting rule. Repeatedly applying rule 3 to the simplest activity diagram results in an activity diagram with neatly nested control statements. For example, in Fig. 5.24, the action state in the simplest activity diagram is replaced with a double-selection ( if...else) statement. Then rule 3 is applied again to the action states in the double-selection statement, replacing each of these action states with a double-selection statement. The dashed action-state symbols around each of the double-selection statements represent the action state that was replaced. [Note: The dashed arrows and dashed action state symbols shown in Fig. 5.24 are not part of the UML. They are used here to illustrate that any action state can be replaced with a control statement.]
Figure 5.24. Repeatedly applying the nesting rule (rule 3) of Fig. 5.21 to the simplest activity diagram.
(This item is displayed on page 212 in the print version)
Rule 4 generates larger, more involved and more deeply nested statements. The diagrams that emerge from applying the rules in Fig. 5.21 constitute the set of all possible structured activity diagrams and hence the set of all possible structured programs. The beauty of the structured approach is that we use only seven simple single-entry/single-exit control statements and assemble them in only two simple ways.
If the rules in Fig. 5.21 are followed, an "unstructured' activity diagram (like the one in Fig. 5.25) cannot be created. If you are uncertain about whether a particular diagram is structured, apply the rules of Fig. 5.21 in reverse to reduce the diagram to the simplest activity diagram. If you can reduce it, the original diagram is structured; otherwise, it is not.
Figure 5.25. "Unstructured" activity diagram.
(This item is displayed on page 213 in the print version)
Structured programming promotes simplicity. Bohm and Jacopini have given us the result that only three forms of control are needed to implement an algorithm:
The sequence structure is trivial. Simply list the statements to execute in the order in which they should execute. Selection is implemented in one of three ways:
In fact, it is straightforward to prove that the simple if statement is sufficient to provide any form of selectioneverything that can be done with the if...else statement and the switch statement can be implemented by combining if statements (although perhaps not as clearly and efficiently).
Repetition is implemented in one of three ways:
It is straightforward to prove that the while statement is sufficient to provide any form of repetition. Everything that can be done with the do...while statement and the for statement can be done with the while statement (although perhaps not as conveniently).
Combining these results illustrates that any form of control ever needed in a Java program can be expressed in terms of
and that these can be combined in only two waysstacking and nesting. indeed, structured programming is the essence of simplicity.
Introduction to Computers, the Internet and the World Wide Web
Introduction to Java Applications
Introduction to Classes and Objects
Control Statements: Part I
Control Statements: Part 2
Methods: A Deeper Look
Classes and Objects: A Deeper Look
Object-Oriented Programming: Inheritance
Object-Oriented Programming: Polymorphism
GUI Components: Part 1
Graphics and Java 2D™
Files and Streams
Searching and Sorting
Introduction to Java Applets
Multimedia: Applets and Applications
GUI Components: Part 2
Accessing Databases with JDBC
JavaServer Pages (JSP)
Strings, Characters and Regular Expressions
Appendix A. Operator Precedence Chart
Appendix B. ASCII Character Set
Appendix C. Keywords and Reserved Words
Appendix D. Primitive Types
Appendix E. (On CD) Number Systems
Appendix F. (On CD) Unicode®
Appendix G. Using the Java API Documentation
Appendix H. (On CD) Creating Documentation with javadoc
Appendix I. (On CD) Bit Manipulation
Appendix J. (On CD) ATM Case Study Code
Appendix K. (On CD) Labeled break and continue Statements
Appendix L. (On CD) UML 2: Additional Diagram Types
Appendix M. (On CD) Design Patterns
Appendix N. Using the Debugger
Inside Back Cover