Combining inheritance and templates in finance applications

Combining inheritance and templates in finance applications

Postby Cuchulainn » Sat Feb 10, 2007 5:04 pm

Some people say use OO, some say use templates. But why not use them together?

C++ is one of the most popular languages for the development of software systems for Quantitative Finance. It is more than 25 years old and it supports the modular, object-oriented paradigm (OOP) and the generic paradigm (GP) in the form of C++ template functions and classes. Most developers are familiar with OOP but a smaller percentage of these developers use C++ templates to design and implement efficient, portable and robust software. There are a number of reasons for this situation some of which are that the syntax of C++ templating can be difficult to understand and second the idea of designing software components using C++ has not been given full justice in the literature. Using templates to design components is similar to how hardware is designed. For example, think about the hardware ports on your laptop; it provides services to other hardware entities and it requires services from other hardware entities. In a similar vein, we are designing the Monte Carlo engine based on similar principles; it consists of a number of plug and socket components. For example, an SDE component provides a set of interfaces for defining and accessing the mathematical description of a stochastic differential equation. It requires data and parameters from a GUI screen, database system and real-time data feed systems. Continuing, a component ?FDM? that approximates the solution of a stochastic differential equation requires the services from SDE and provides services such as discrete paths and other statistics to other components, for example an Excel application. In this sense we build large applications using interoperable building blocks. This idea is called policy-based design using C++ templates.
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