Swift - Classes


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Classes in Swift 4 are building blocks of flexible constructs. Similar to constants, variables and functions the user can define class properties and methods. Swift 4 provides us the functionality that while declaring classes the users need not create interfaces or implementation files. Swift 4 allows us to create classes as a single file and the external interfaces will be created by default once the classes are initialized.

Benefits of having Classes

  • Inheritance acquires the properties of one class to another class

  • Type casting enables the user to check class type at run time

  • Deinitializers take care of releasing memory resources

  • Reference counting allows the class instance to have more than one reference

Common Characteristics of Classes and structures

  • Properties are defined to store values
  • Subscripts are defined for providing access to values
  • Methods are initialized to improve functionality
  • Initial state are defined by initializers
  • Functionality are expanded beyond default values
  • Confirming protocol functionality standards

Syntax

Class classname {
   Definition 1
   Definition 2
   --- 
   Definition N
}

Class Definition

class student {
   var studname: String
   var mark: Int 
   var mark2: Int 
}

The syntax for creating instances

let studrecord = student()

Example

Live Demo
class MarksStruct {
   var mark: Int
   init(mark: Int) {
      self.mark = mark
   }
}

class studentMarks {
   var mark = 300
}

let marks = studentMarks()
print("Mark is \(marks.mark)")

When we run the above program using playground, we get the following result −

Mark is 300

Accessing Class Properties as Reference Types

Class properties can be accessed by the '.' syntax. Property name is separated by a '.' after the instance name.

Live Demo
class MarksStruct {
   var mark: Int
   init(mark: Int) {
      self.mark = mark
   }
}

class studentMarks {
   var mark1 = 300
   var mark2 = 400
   var mark3 = 900
}

let marks = studentMarks()
print("Mark1 is \(marks.mark1)")
print("Mark2 is \(marks.mark2)")
print("Mark3 is \(marks.mark3)")

When we run the above program using playground, we get the following result −

Mark1 is 300
Mark2 is 400
Mark3 is 900

Class Identity Operators

Classes in Swift 4 refers multiple constants and variables pointing to a single instance. To know about the constants and variables pointing to a particular class instance identity operators are used. Class instances are always passed by reference. In Classes NSString, NSArray, and NSDictionary instances are always assigned and passed around as a reference to an existing instance, rather than as a copy.

Identical to Operators Not Identical to Operators
Operator used is (===) Operator used is (!==)
Returns true when two constants or variables pointing to a same instance Returns true when two constants or variables pointing to a different instance
Live Demo
class SampleClass: Equatable {
   let myProperty: String
   init(s: String) {
      myProperty = s
   }
}

func ==(lhs: SampleClass, rhs: SampleClass) -> Bool {
   return lhs.myProperty == rhs.myProperty
}

let spClass1 = SampleClass(s: "Hello")
let spClass2 = SampleClass(s: "Hello")

spClass1 === spClass2 // false
print("\(spClass1)")

spClass1 !== spClass2 // true
print("\(spClass2)")

When we run the above program using playground, we get the following result −

main.SampleClass
main.SampleClass


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