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Unified Modeling Language Reference Manual, The, Second Edition by Grady Booch, Ivar Jacobson, James Rumbaugh

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Association

An association describes discrete connections among objects or other instances in a system. An association relates an ordered list (tuple) of two or more classifiers, with repetitions permitted. The most common kind of association is a binary association between a pair of classifiers. An instance of an association is a link. A link comprises a tuple (an ordered list) of objects, each drawn from its corresponding class. A binary link comprises a pair of objects.

Associations carry information about relationships among objects in a system. As a system executes, links among objects are created and destroyed. Associations are the “glue” that ties a system together. Without associations, there are nothing but isolated classes that don't ...

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