# Classes

Classes are an optional way of structuring data in C++. They are the integral part of object-oriented programming like we know it from Java. Yet, with optional I mean you are free to use classes and not forced too (not like in Java).

A class can be seen as a blueprint for the structure of data. When speaking of data in the context of classes, we can call it heterogeneous data. What this means is that a class can be build upon different data types. Imagine a class for descriping a person - it might hold a string value for the person's name, but also an integer for their age.

By default, all properties of a class are kept private, therefore not visble outside of the scope.

class Position {  public:    int x, y;};int main(int argc, const char * argv[]) {  Position position;  position.x = 10;  position.y = 10;}

We can call functions from classes, once we create an instance of it:

class Person {  public:    string getName() {      return "Max";    }};int main() {  Person max;  cout << max.getName() << endl;  return 0;}

## Static methods​

class Person {  public:    static void greet(string name) {      cout << "Hello, " << name << endl;    }};int main() {    Person::greet("Max");  return 0;}

Instead of writing instance.greet() we now address the name of the class, and call the function directly. Therefore, we no longer need an instance to call this function.
The same works for variables inside the class.

## The constructor​

The constructor is run when the object is created. By default, there is always a constructor, but the default one does nothing. Let's create a custom constructor:

class Person {  public:    Person() {      cout << "Person object is created" << endl;    }};// ......Person max; 

Making the class static-only and not allowing creating instances:

class Log {  private:    Log();  public:    static void greet() {      cout << "hello" << endl;    }};

Now, trying to create an instance of this class will always lead to an error.

## The destructor​

The destructor is create like the constructor, just with a "~" before the name. In this example, as the function creates the instance, once the function is done and removed from the stack, the object is deleted.

class Log {  public:    ~Log() {      cout << "Object will be deleted" << endl;    }};void createObject() {  Log logger;}int main() {  createObject()  return 0;}

Calling the destructor manually is possible, but not recommended and very rare:

logger.~Log();