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pointers in object-oriented matlab programing

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I want to create several objects that can "communicate with each other"
for instance, let's say i have a class called "child" and a class called "woman", and i want each child to have a property "mother" and each woman to have a property "children". these properties should contain some sort of pointer to the other objects, so that i can (for instance) add a function to the "woman" class named "feed_children" and i can go over all all her children and change some parameter.
is there a way to do this? i note here that i don't want to simply use some sort of structure, where the children are contained in a "struct" inside the "mother" object. i want all the objects to appear in the workspace and have independent existence, but to have some way of pointing at each other. i know that in many object oriented languages this is very easy to do
many thanks
i attach here my code if anyone is interested, the "TA_system" class is the mother (components are children) and a duct is a component.

  2 Comments

Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson on 27 Aug 2020
MATLAB objects derived from "handle" class effectively use pointers.
nathan blanc
nathan blanc on 27 Aug 2020
thank you for your answer walter, could you expand on that? i tried to read about handle objects before posting the question, my understanding was that they cannot do what i am tryind to do. could you explain how you would do what i asked uding handle objects?

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Accepted Answer

Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson on 27 Aug 2020
classdef woman < handle
properties
children = handle([]);
end
methods
function obj = woman
end
function addchild(obj, this_child)
obj.children(end+1) = this_child;
end
end
end
classdef child < handle
properties
mother = handle([]);
end
methods
function obj = child(this_mother)
obj.mother = this_mother;
addchild(this_mother, obj);
end
end
end

  5 Comments

Show 2 older comments
Steven Lord
Steven Lord on 27 Aug 2020
All that is true, and those are good points for nathan blanc to consider when designing their real class hierarchy. Sometimes the process of designing a class hierarchy can be more difficult and/or time consuming than implementing it!
Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson on 28 Aug 2020
Yes, figuring out what actually want to do can be tough! And knowing when to stop designing can be hard!

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More Answers (1)

James Tursa
James Tursa on 27 Aug 2020
MATLAB does not have variable pointers ... at least not in the sense of C/C++ like you are probably alluding to.

  1 Comment

nathan blanc
nathan blanc on 27 Aug 2020
how a about a different sense? is there a way to do what i am trying to do?

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