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Object orientation (OO) is an approach to modeling and software engineering that encapsulates both data and the algorithms that operate on them into a single packet or object that is representative of some phenomenon. These objects in effect know what they are (their attributes) and what they can do (their algorithms, called methods) in response to messages from the outside world.

Objects are organized into classes, which can have an inheritance structure whereby they have parents from whom they can inherit both attributes and methods, and they may have children, called subclasses, to which they pass on their attributes and methods. It is also possible to have multiple inheritances in which there are two parents for a single child. Classes that cannot be instantiated are called ...

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