Charlie Alfred’s Weblog

February 21, 2009

Pattern Languages

Filed under: architecture,pattern language,patterns — charliealfred @ 2:05 pm

It has been 32 years since Christopher Alexander wrote A Timeless Way of Building, and 15 since the Gang of Four wrote Design Patterns.  Today, virtually everybody working in software development can tell you what a Singleton or a Factory is.  And that is a very good thing.  But, is it enough?


Christopher Alexander talks about the preeminence of a pattern language — a system of interrelated patterns that combine and synergize to resolve all of the forces in the larger context.  No matter how large your catalog of design pattern is, you don’t have a pattern language until you knit them into a system.  Sure sounds like architecture to me!


The following essay (  explores Design Patterns, A Timeless Way of Building, and several related topics to try to understand how, as an industry, we can start putting the language back into pattern languages.  And along the way, we identify a North Star, for those who believe that pattern languages are an important step in the maturation of software development.


1 Comment

  1. Just passing by.Btw, you website have great content!

    Don’t pay for your electricity any longer…
    Instead, the power company will pay YOU!

    Comment by Mike — March 2, 2009 @ 3:34 pm

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