Re: Accessor Functions (getter) for C String (Character Array) Members

"Bo Persson" <>
Thu, 24 Jun 2010 05:01:49 CST
CoryG89 wrote:

Ok, so I am working on this for school. I am building a model
business application in the console using C++.

The application is modeled as a database/cashier program. I have a
class called BookData that is supposed to hold a number of character
arrays and a few other variables.

Here are my private members:

char _isbn[14];
char _title[51];
char _author[31];
char _publisher[31];
char _date[11];
int _quantity;
double _cost;
double _price;

I am supposed to have public accessor and mutator functions that
'get' and set' each private member of the class. I was surprised to
learn this, but apparently you cannot return an array from a
function in C++

Normally I know I would write an accessor function for the last
three similar to something like this:

double BookData::getCost()
      return _cost;

I am not sure how I should go about doing this for the character
arrays. This is for a C++ course and I believe I am supposed to
keep the c strings and not use strings from the standard libraries.
I cannot remember but I think that you are supposed to use pointers
to do this somehow. I tried but the syntax seems clumsy and I am
getting errors. Any tips would be most appreciated.

The syntax IS clumpsy and error prone - that's why C++ introduced std::string. To otherwise get access to an array, the C way is returning a pointer to the first character.

This is supposed to work by booting up and filling a dynamically
allocated array of BookData class objects from a delimited data
file. I need these 'setter' / 'getter' functions for accessing and
manipulating these values to add other functionality. I am going to
be working on this for the rest of tonight and all tomorrow. So
anyone that can give me any advice on this subject would be most

I'm not sure it is a good idea to have separate setters for all values, for example I would think you cannot change publisher without also changing the publishing date. And how often do you change the author's name for a published book?

Bo Persson

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