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This is going to be a very non-technical, soft question and I am not sure if this is the right platform. But I am a beginning CS student so I hope you guys tolerate it.

In the first semester we were introduced to OOP concepts like encapsulation, data hiding, modularity, inheritance and so on through Java and UML. (Java is my first programming language)

The way I understand it, OOP is a way of managing software complexity. But its principles are not new or unique, they are in a sense universal to all engineering fields.

For example a car is a very complex structure whose complexity is managed by a hierarchy of modular and encapsulated components with well-defined behaviors and interfaces.

But I do not understand the reason behind introducing a new programming paradigm. I think all the principles used for managing complexity can be realized by procedural programming languages. For example, for modularity we can just divide the program into many small programs that perform well-defined tasks whose code is contained in separate files. These programs would interact with each other through their well-defined input and output. The files may be protected (encrypted?) to achieve encapsulation. For code re-use we can just call those files whenever they are needed in new programs. Doesn't this capture all what OOP is or am I missing something very obvious?

merged by Thomas Owens Mar 20 '17 at 22:55

This question was merged with Do we really need OO languages to manage software complexity? because it is an exact duplicate of that question.

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