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language An object-oriented language produced by BertrandMeyer in 1985. Eiffel has classes with multipleinheritance and repeated inheritance, deferred classes
(like Smalltalk's abstract class), and clusters of
classes. Objects can have both static types and dynamictypes. The dynamic type must be a descendant of the static
(declared) type. Dynamic binding resolves multipleinheritance clashes. It has flattened forms of classes, in
which all of the inherited features are added at the same
level and generic classes parametrised by type.
may be equipped with assertions (routine preconditions and
postconditions, class invariants) implementing the theory of
"Design by Contract" and helping produce more reliable
Eiffel is compiled to C. It comes with libraries containing
several hundred classes: data structures and algorithms
(EiffelBase), graphics and user interfaces (EiffelVision) and
language analysis (EiffelLex, EiffelParse).
The first release of Eiffel was release 1.4, introduced at the
first OOPSLA in October 1986. The language proper was first
described in a University of California, Santa Barbara report
dated September 1985.
Eiffel is available, with different libraries, from several
sources including Interactive Software Engineering, USA (ISE
Eiffel version 3.3); Sig Computer GmbH, Germany (Eiffel/S);
and Tower, Inc., Austin (Tower Eiffel).
The language definition is administered by an open
organisation, the Nonprofit International Consortium for
Eiffel (NICE). There is a standard kernel library.
An Eiffel source checker and compiler front-end is