Java threads, Edition: 3rd ed by Scott Oaks; Henry Wong

By Scott Oaks; Henry Wong

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So too is the program that you use to listen to music. You're able to read email and listen to music at the same time because the computer executes both lists of instructions at about the same time. In fact, what happens is that the computer executes a handful of instructions from the email application and then executes a handful of instructions from the music program. It continues this procedure, switching back and forth between lists of instructions, and it does that quickly enough so that both programs appear to be executing at the same time.

6 Threads and Objects Let's talk a little more about how threads interact. Consider the RandomCharacterGenerator thread. We saw how another class (the SwingTypeTester class) kept a reference to that thread and how it continued to call methods on that object. Although those methods are defined in the RandomCharacterGenerator class, they are not executed by that thread. Instead, methods like the setDone( ) method are executed by the Swing event-dispatching thread as it executes the actionPerformed() method within the SwingTypeTester class.

Otherwise, it has no significance, so give your threads names that make sense to you when you see them printed. The default name for a thread is Thread-N, where N is a unique number. Runnable target We discuss runnables in depth later in this chapter. A runnable object is the list of instructions that the thread executes. By default, this is the information in the run() method of the thread itself. Note that the Thread class itself implements the Runnable interface. Thread group Thread groups are an advanced topic (see Chapter 13).

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