There are two types of polymorphism in computer science: static polymorphism and dynamic polymorphism.
- Static polymorphism: Static polymorphism, also known as compile-time polymorphism, refers to the ability of an object or function to take on multiple forms at compile time. This is achieved through function overloading and operator overloading.
Function overloading: Function overloading occurs when a function has multiple versions with different parameter lists. When a function is called, the compiler selects the correct version of the function based on the number and type of arguments passed to the function.
Operator overloading: Operator overloading occurs when an operator has multiple versions with different operand types. For example, the + operator can be used to add two integers, or to concatenate two strings. The compiler selects the correct version of the operator based on the operand types.
- Dynamic polymorphism: Dynamic polymorphism, also known as runtime polymorphism, refers to the ability of an object or function to take on multiple forms at runtime. This is achieved through inheritance and method overriding.
Inheritance: Inheritance is a mechanism in object-oriented programming t hat allows a subclass to inherit the properties and methods of a superclass. When a method is called on an object, the runtime system will check the object’s class hierarchy to find the correct implementation of the method.
Method overriding: Method overriding occurs when a subclass defines a method with the same name and signature as a method in the superclass. When the method is called on an object, the runtime system will use the implementation in the subclass, rather than the implementation in the superclass.
By using static and dynamic polymorphism, a programmer can write code that is flexible and adaptable to different scenarios and requirements. This helps to improve the maintainability and reuse of code, and allows the code to handle a wider range of inputs and situations.