UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Object-oriented software development in structural engineering Elbury, Kevin M.


The recent emergence of the object-oriented paradigm has created a very powerful methodology to aid software developers in the creation of complex applications. This technology is quite common in fields such as computer science and computer engineering but still remains relatively unexplored in more traditional disciplines such as Civil Engineering. The paradigm enforces several basic necessities required by complex, modern software applications. These include management of complexity, data modelling, information hiding, software reusability, and software evolution. The purpose of this thesis is to give an overview of the object-oriented paradigm. This discussion includes a review of the necessary requirements of an object-oriented language. This is followed by the presentation of a software diagramming notation which can aid in the data modelling and design of a software system before coding is started. Also presented is a discussion on the pragmatics of object-oriented development. A universal structural analysis preprocessor called "Cross Link" is developed by the author to demonstrate the application of the object paradigm. Cross Link is intended to provide a unified, easy to use, graphical preprocessing environment that can be used as a front end for any type of finite element analysis programme or CADD package. This is achieved through the implementation of a powerful macro programming language which allows users to manipulate the finite element database in many different ways.

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