In object-oriented programming , a class is a template definition of the method s and variable s in a particular kind of object . Thus, an object is a specific instance of a class; it contains real values instead of variables.
The class is one of the defining ideas of object-oriented programming. Among the important ideas about classes are:
- A class can have subclasses that can inherit all or some of the characteristics of the class. In relation to each subclass, the class becomes the superclass.
- Subclasses can also define their own methods and variables that are not part of their superclass.
- The structure of a class and its subclasses is called the class hierarchy.