2011-04-08 Using the decorator pattern in Python

For my current project, we are trying to look into the future, where our Python scripts might be used on different electronics.

In order for this to work, our Python library for communication with our Generic EGSE software must easily be rewritten. These changes will not be big: communication with an electronics board will take place over a cable of some sorts. That cable and protocol aspect is abstracted away by a daemon, as part of the Generic EGSE.


However, what is not abstracted away, is the contents of the protocol. Our electronics board incorporates an FPGA which takes a certain address (say, address 42) to mean something such as a bias voltage. The electronics board(s) of our project partner might have entirely different addresses, or might require multiple addresses to be set.

Thus, we need the Python scripts to work with a different set of addresses in the future, and we need the flexibility to make exceptions for specific addresses. On the other hand, for now the library needs to work as-is.

The way to typically reach this goal, is to use a decorator pattern. I'm looking into the best way to do this in Python. Since I'm not (yet :-) a guru in the matter of Python, this'll be an interesting experiment.

(Photo by Altera Corporation)