generative power. They do not supply ready-made answers: people need toexercise their own creativity to implement a pattern. In addition, because theyinvolve abstracting away from individual cases, patterns are hard to discover andmay take a long time to describe adequately. Alexander and colleagues spent overten years refining A Pattern Language and Alexander has commented that findingpatterns is a hard as theoretical nuclear physics [2, p. 261].Alexander’s own patterns are structured and formatted as follows :
To capture succinctly (and evocatively) the
that the patternoffers.
To mark the significance of the pattern, two asterisks marking a"true invariant", one marking a pattern which has made progress towardsidentifying such an invariant, but which needs further work, and noasterisks indicating confidence that an invariant has not been established,and that variations are to be expected.
"... which shows an archetypal example of that pattern." This maybe literal or impressionistic. A subsidiary function may be to help the readerremember and find the pattern subsequently.
Setting the context and linking to higher level patterns.
To mark the beginning of the problem.
(In bold type) summarising the essence of the problem.
Describing the empirical background of the pattern, theevidence for its validity, range of variation of manifestation.
(In bold type) Describing the "... field of physical and socialrelationships which are required to solve the stated problem in the statedcontext." as a statement, in imperative form.
Of the solution (For Alexander the solution should always becapable of a diagrammatic representation.)
To mark the end of the main body of the pattern.
To lower level patterns that are required to complete thispattern.Pattern makers in other disciplines have adapted this layout as needed.
2.2 Pattern Languages
atterns & guidelineshttp://www.it.bton.ac.uk/staff/lp22/guidelinesdraft.html3 of 1111/6/2008 1:17 PM