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Support for creating serializable "inside-out" classes


Class::Std introduced the "inside-out" model for classes (perldoc Class::Std for details). Among its salient features is complete encapsulation; that is, an object's data may only be accessed via its methods, unlike the usual hashref model that permits direct access by any code whatsoever. However, the drawback of complete encapsulation is that normal mechanisms for serialization won't work, as they rely on direct access to an object's attributes.

This class provides the class-building functionality from Class::Std, and in addition provides an interface to allow Storable to freeze and thaw any declared attributes of this class and any superclasses that were built via Class::Std::Storable.

However, in order to let Storable save attributes and construct the object, it is necessary to expose the attributes of the class to the world. Thus, any code could use the same interface that Storable does to get a copy of object attributes and create new objects with arbitrary attributes without going through the constructor. While the interface CAN'T be used to replace the existing attributes of an object, it COULD be used to create an arbitrarily mutated clone of an object without going through its methods. Also, if attributes are themselves references, then the objects to which they refer can be obtained and modified.

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