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As one of those who has expressed skeptisim about "frameworks" here, I'll have a go a producing a definition. Or rather, a comparison between a 'framework' and a 'library'.

  • A framework provides the common infrastructure supporting a definied architecture for a class of applications.

    (IMO) the key element of a framework is that it provides the structure of an application and leaves the application programmer to fill in the details of the specific application.

    As the label suggests, this is analogous to the framework, infrastructure of (say) an office building within which you can conduct any type of business. You would normally require a different type of framework for a domestic building or a warehouse operation etc.

  • A library (or abstract class) provides a service to any application that needs that service.

    A library encapsulates the detail of some specific service or algorithm and allows the application programmer to ignore the details. It can be called from any kind of application.

    This is analogous to (say) the telephone system. The system stays essentially the same (whilst varying in scale), regardless of the purpose of the building (application).

In a nutshell, frameworks call you; you call libraries.

Whilst what you describe provides the infrastructure for the creation of classes, the classes produced using it would usually be more akin to libraries. That is, classes built using your infrastructure would themselves be components within larger applications, and there would often be several such derived classes within any moderately sized application.

So whilst it is possible to see how you arrived at the term 'mini-framework', my gut feel about what constitutes a framework is that they provide the outer shell and overall structure for an application along with the stubs for essential plumbing. Viewed this way, your module doesn't really live up to the tag. As useful as it is, I would consider it the wrong label.


Examine what is said, not who speaks -- Silence betokens consent -- Love the truth but pardon error.
"Science is about questioning the status quo. Questioning authority".
In the absence of evidence, opinion is indistinguishable from prejudice.

In reply to Re: Tiny Frameworks by BrowserUk
in thread Tiny Frameworks by Ovid

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