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eXtremeDB's type-safe API eliminates database corruption

Embedded database function libraries offer benefits including convenience, portability and productivity, but the manner in which they are constructed and used leads to bugs. These application programming interfaces (APIs) are nearly always data structure ignorant -- they handle data without knowing its type. This severely limits the compiler's and runtime's abilities to perform any validation, greatly increasing the likelihood of programming mistakes slipping through QA.

McObject's eXtremeDB embedded database takes a dramatic step forward by introducing a type-safe API. In its native API, eXtremeDB offers a limited set of static functions for basic tasks such as opening and closing the database. However, most of the functions for interacting with a given database design are generated when the schema is compiled using eXtremeDB's mcocomp database definition language (DDL) compiler utility.

Because these functions "know" the data type they are expected to handle, assignment errors are caught when the application is compiled - rather than after release, when addressing the problem is typically much more expensive.


This approach has the additional benefit of creating a more intuitive, easier-to-learn programming interface. The eXtremeDB-generated interfaces are more readable and self-documenting than are functions from a static interface designed for use with an infinite variety of database designs. The developer knows exactly what operation is being carried out and on what data, and the project enjoys a greatly reduced risk of introducing destructive bugs.

Further Reading

Interested in a side-by-side code comparisons of eXtremeDB's type-safe API and a traditional "static" database interface? We recommend the article Self-Diagnostic APIs: Software Quality's Next Frontier in Linux Journal.

Additional information on the concept of a type-safe API, and eXtremeDB's implementation, can be found in the EE Times article, Toward Self-Diagnostic APIs for Embedded Systems.

Get more information about the eXtremeDB embedded database.