Generics Patterns and Practices: ideas and suggestions for when to use generics


So at TechEd-2006, I gave a chalktalk on generics patterns and practices. I’ve zipped the content up here so folks can check it out if they want.

I start by giving a quick background on generics (the GenericsBasics solution attached), then looking for patterns in the framework of where generics might be applied (The Examples project in the solution attached), to help people see where they might look for ways to create generics APIs in their own code. I also give a couple of exmaples of ‘anti’ patterns, just so they can see clearly, why some stuff is discouraged. I finally finish with a list of “Kit’s Do’s and Don’ts”.

The last section (Do’s and Don’ts) is in the attached slides. It certainly contains a lot of my own priorities and suggestions, and so I give each of the items a rating to help you know how I would rate it’s relative priority. Out of 5 stars, everything is 3 or more stars of course: less than 3 stars, and it’s not something I would suggest doing, therefore, it aint on the list!

But the fundamentals for the list were developed by Krzysztof Cwalina, and were first published on his blog. In case you didn’t know, Krzys is the king of framework design guidelines, and he has a most excellent book on this topic, not surprisingly titled ‘Framework Design Guidelines’.

Kit George (


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