Adapter Design Pattern

This entry is part of a series on programming Design Patterns that provides a framework for the rapid recall and use of patterns during application design. 

The Adapter design pattern is used to wrap a class in code that allows that class to be used via a different interface. Another name for the pattern is a Wrapper.

To understand how this pattern might be used, consider how software to display an image on a fixed size device might be constructed. Assume the following class and method are provided by the standard device software:

class Display - contains methods to create displays on the device.

displayImage(source) - method that displays an image with the dimensions of the device screen.

An adapter would fit an image of any size to the device screen:

class DisplayAdapter - contains methods that fit an image of any size to the device screen.

imageAdapter(original) - method that changes the size of the original image to fit the display screen.

imageResample(original, resized) - method that resamples the image for size change.

displayImage(resized) - uses the method built into the device to display the resized image.