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Java Garage by Eben Hewitt

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Let's Get One Thing Straight

Let's get one thing straight. Right off the bat. There are really two ways that people in Javaland use the term interface. One is conceptual and one is concrete.

People sometimes talk about a program's interface, or even a class' interface. Remember that API is an acronym for Application Programming Interface. When used this way, it means the thing with which we interact. It's what is exposed to us that we can work with. It is the visible boundary of a class or a program or a programming language's libraries. This is the conceptual version of the term interface. It means the public (I really mean non-private) methods that we can call to do something.

On the other hand, an interface is a Java programming language construct, ...

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