Patterns from the master

I came across a fascinating article, a transcript of a speech by Christopher Alexander, architect and author of "A Pattern Language."

Alexander is the guy who invented Patterns as they have now been broadly adopted by the Software Design community. In this piece Alexander tells of the thinking and objectives that led to the Pattern approach to architectural design - much more than simply cataloging patterns that were known work. He was hoping that when architects used these patterns they would be led, driven, forced into creating living and livable structures.

In his words:

"However, that is not all that pattern languages are supposed to do. The pattern language that we began creating in the 1970s had other essential features. First, it has a moral component. Second, it has the aim of creating coherence, morphological coherence in the things which are made with it. And third, it is generative: it allows people to create coherence, morally sound objects, and encourages and enables this process because of its emphasis on the coherence of the created whole.

I don't know whether these features of pattern language have yet been translated into your discipline. "

A really good read.
Posted on September 10, 2004 and filed under Technology.