Class: Class

Inherits:
Module show all
Defined in:
object.c,
class.c,
object.c

Overview

Classes in Ruby are first-class objects—each is an instance of class Class.

Typically, you create a new class by using:

class Name
 # some class describing the class behavior
end

When a new class is created, an object of type Class is initialized and assigned to a global constant (Name in this case).

When Name.new is called to create a new object, the new method in Class is run by default. This can be demonstrated by overriding new in Class:

class Class
   alias oldNew  new
   def new(*args)
     print "Creating a new ", self.name, "\n"
     oldNew(*args)
   end
 end

 class Name
 end

 n = Name.new

produces:

Creating a new Name

Classes, modules, and objects are interrelated. In the diagram that follows, the vertical arrows represent inheritance, and the parentheses meta-classes. All metaclasses are instances of the class `Class'.

                         +---------+             +-...
                         |         |             |
         BasicObject-----|-->(BasicObject)-------|-...
             ^           |         ^             |
             |           |         |             |
          Object---------|----->(Object)---------|-...
             ^           |         ^             |
             |           |         |             |
             +-------+   |         +--------+    |
             |       |   |         |        |    |
             |    Module-|---------|--->(Module)-|-...
             |       ^   |         |        ^    |
             |       |   |         |        |    |
             |     Class-|---------|---->(Class)-|-...
             |       ^   |         |        ^    |
             |       +---+         |        +----+
             |                     |
obj--->OtherClass---------->(OtherClass)-----------...

Instance Method Summary collapse

Methods inherited from Module

#<, #<=, #<=>, #==, #===, #>, #>=, #alias_method, #ancestors, #append_features, #attr, #attr_accessor, #attr_reader, #attr_writer, #autoload, #autoload?, #class_eval, #class_exec, #class_variable_defined?, #class_variable_get, #class_variable_set, #class_variables, #const_defined?, #const_get, #const_missing, #const_set, #constants, constants, #define_method, #extend_object, #extended, #freeze, #include, #include?, #included, #included_modules, #initialize_copy, #instance_method, #instance_methods, #method_added, #method_defined?, #method_removed, #method_undefined, #module_eval, #module_exec, #module_function, #name, nesting, #prepend, #prepend_features, #prepended, #private, #private_class_method, #private_constant, #private_instance_methods, #private_method_defined?, #protected, #protected_instance_methods, #protected_method_defined?, #public, #public_class_method, #public_constant, #public_instance_method, #public_instance_methods, #public_method_defined?, #refine, #remove_class_variable, #remove_const, #remove_method, #singleton_class?, #to_s, #undef_method, #using

Constructor Details

#new(super_class = Object) ⇒ Class #new(super_class = Object) {|mod| ... } ⇒ Class

Creates a new anonymous (unnamed) class with the given superclass (or Object if no parameter is given). You can give a class a name by assigning the class object to a constant.

If a block is given, it is passed the class object, and the block is evaluated in the context of this class using class_eval.

fred = Class.new do
  def meth1
    "hello"
  end
  def meth2
    "bye"
  end
end

a = fred.new     #=> #<#<Class:0x100381890>:0x100376b98>
a.meth1          #=> "hello"
a.meth2          #=> "bye"

Assign the class to a constant (name starting uppercase) if you want to treat it like a regular class.

Overloads:

  • #new(super_class = Object) ⇒ Class
  • #new(super_class = Object) {|mod| ... } ⇒ Class

    Yields:

    • (mod)

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# File 'object.c', line 1734

static VALUE
rb_class_initialize(int argc, VALUE *argv, VALUE klass)
{
    VALUE super;

    if (RCLASS_SUPER(klass) != 0 || klass == rb_cBasicObject) {
	rb_raise(rb_eTypeError, "already initialized class");
    }
    if (argc == 0) {
	super = rb_cObject;
    }
    else {
	rb_scan_args(argc, argv, "01", &super);
	rb_check_inheritable(super);
	if (super != rb_cBasicObject && !RCLASS_SUPER(super)) {
	    rb_raise(rb_eTypeError, "can't inherit uninitialized class");
	}
    }
    RCLASS_SET_SUPER(klass, super);
    rb_make_metaclass(klass, RBASIC(super)->klass);
    rb_class_inherited(super, klass);
    rb_mod_initialize(klass);

    return klass;
}

Instance Method Details

#allocateObject

Allocates space for a new object of class's class and does not call initialize on the new instance. The returned object must be an instance of class.

klass = Class.new do
  def initialize(*args)
    @initialized = true
  end

  def initialized?
    @initialized || false
  end
end

klass.allocate.initialized? #=> false

Returns:


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# File 'object.c', line 1782

VALUE
rb_obj_alloc(VALUE klass)
{
    VALUE obj;
    rb_alloc_func_t allocator;

    if (RCLASS_SUPER(klass) == 0 && klass != rb_cBasicObject) {
	rb_raise(rb_eTypeError, "can't instantiate uninitialized class");
    }
    if (FL_TEST(klass, FL_SINGLETON)) {
	rb_raise(rb_eTypeError, "can't create instance of singleton class");
    }
    allocator = rb_get_alloc_func(klass);
    if (!allocator) {
	rb_raise(rb_eTypeError, "allocator undefined for %"PRIsVALUE,
		 klass);
    }

#if !defined(DTRACE_PROBES_DISABLED) || !DTRACE_PROBES_DISABLED
    if (RUBY_DTRACE_OBJECT_CREATE_ENABLED()) {
        const char * file = rb_sourcefile();
        RUBY_DTRACE_OBJECT_CREATE(rb_class2name(klass),
				  file ? file : "",
				  rb_sourceline());
    }
#endif

    obj = (*allocator)(klass);

    if (rb_obj_class(obj) != rb_class_real(klass)) {
	rb_raise(rb_eTypeError, "wrong instance allocation");
    }
    return obj;
}

#inheritedObject (private)

Not documented


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# File 'object.c', line 907

static VALUE
rb_obj_dummy(void)
{
    return Qnil;
}

#new(args, ...) ⇒ Object

Calls allocate to create a new object of class's class, then invokes that object's initialize method, passing it args. This is the method that ends up getting called whenever an object is constructed using .new.

Returns:


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# File 'object.c', line 1836

VALUE
rb_class_new_instance(int argc, VALUE *argv, VALUE klass)
{
    VALUE obj;

    obj = rb_obj_alloc(klass);
    rb_obj_call_init(obj, argc, argv);

    return obj;
}

#superclassnil

Returns the superclass of class, or nil.

File.superclass          #=> IO
IO.superclass            #=> Object
Object.superclass        #=> BasicObject
class Foo; end
class Bar < Foo; end
Bar.superclass           #=> Foo

returns nil when the given class hasn't a parent class:

BasicObject.superclass   #=> nil

Returns:

  • (nil)

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# File 'object.c', line 1866

VALUE
rb_class_superclass(VALUE klass)
{
    VALUE super = RCLASS_SUPER(klass);

    if (!super) {
	if (klass == rb_cBasicObject) return Qnil;
	rb_raise(rb_eTypeError, "uninitialized class");
    }
    while (RB_TYPE_P(super, T_ICLASS)) {
	super = RCLASS_SUPER(super);
    }
    if (!super) {
	return Qnil;
    }
    return super;
}