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Java, A Beginner’s Guide, 5th Edition by Herbert Schildt

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Using Abstract Classes

Sometimes you will want to create a superclass that defines only a generalized form that will be shared by all of its subclasses, leaving it to each subclass to fill in the details. Such a class determines the nature of the methods that the subclasses must implement but does not, itself, provide an implementation of one or more of these methods. One way this situation can occur is when a superclass is unable to create a meaningful implementation for a method. This is the case with the version of TwoDShape used in the preceding example. The definition of area( ) is simply a placeholder. It will not compute and display the area of any type of object.

As you will see as you create your own class libraries, it is not uncommon ...

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