1979 TheTimelessWayOfBuilding

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Subject Headings: Design Pattern, Architecture.


Cited By


  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Timeless_Way_of_Building
    • The Timeless Way of Building is a 1979 book that ties life and architecture together, written by Christopher Alexander.
    • It has had a huge influence on creative thinking, especially in the areas of architecture and software design. [citation needed]
    • In the book, Alexander introduces the concept of the "quality without a name", and argues that we should seek to include this nameless quality in our buildings. Alexander attempts to the idea by surrounding it with existing concepts that reflect a part of the quality with no name but are not sufficient to define it individually.


  • (Gangemi, 2005) ⇒ Aldo Gangemi. (2005). “Ontology Design Patterns for Semantic Web Content.” In: Proceedings of the International Semantic Web Conference (ISWC 2005). doi:10.1007/11574620.
    • In the seventies, the architect and mathematician Christopher Alexander introduced the term “design pattern” for shared guidelines that help solve design problems. In [1] he argues that a good design can be achieved by means of a set of rules that are “packaged” in the form of patterns, such as “courtyards which live”, “windows place”, or “entrance room”. Design patterns are assumed as archetypal solutions to design problems in a certain context.


Book overview

  • The theory of architecture implicit in our world today, Christopher Alexander believes, is bankrupt. More and more people are aware that something is deeply wrong. Yet the power of present-day ideas is so great that many feel uncomfortable, even afraid, to say openly that they dislike what is happening, because they are afraid to seem foolish, afraid perhaps that they will be laughed at. Now, at last, here is a coherent theory which describes in modern terms an architecture as ancient as human society itself.

Page 247

  • As an element in the world, each pattern is a relationship between a certain context, a certain system of forces which occurs repeatedly in that context, and a certain spatial configuration which allows these forces to resolve themselves. As an element of language, a pattern is an instruction, which shows how this spatial configuration can be used, over and over again, to resolve the given system of forces, wherever the context makes it relevant.

Page 253

Patterns are attempts to marry the relevant aspects of the physical and social characteristics of a setting into a design; they provide a facility to share knowledge about design solutions and the setting in which such a solution is applied: "..every pattern we define must be formulated in the form of a rule which establishes a relationship between a context, a system of forces which arises in that context, and a configuration which...,

 AuthorvolumeDate ValuetitletypejournaltitleUrldoinoteyear
1979 TheTimelessWayOfBuildingChristopher AlexanderThe Timeless Way of Buildinghttp://books.google.com/books?id=H6CE9hlbO8sC1979