CumInCAD is a Cumulative Index about publications in Computer Aided Architectural Design
supported by the sibling associations ACADIA, CAADRIA, eCAADe, SIGraDi, ASCAAD and CAAD futures

PDF papers
id ecaade2007_042
authors Ozel, Filiz
year 2007
title Pattern Language and Embedded Knowledge in Building Information Modeling
source Predicting the Future [25th eCAADe Conference Proceedings / ISBN 978-0-9541183-6-5] Frankfurt am Main (Germany) 26-29 September 2007, pp. 457-464
summary When Christopher Alexander (1977), trained both as a mathematician and an architect, published his seminal work “The Pattern Language” in the 1970’s and introduced the concept of “pattern language”, computers were still in their infancy, CAD did not exist as we know it today, and computer information modeling was not even in the radar screen of researchers. Design communication simply meant manual drafting. With the concept of ‘pattern language” (, Alexander proposed a systematic method for dealing with complexity, which proved itself to be more relevant than ever in the digital age. The concept is often cited by computer scientists as a precursor to object oriented modeling. This study explores the potential of “pattern language” for structuring building information and design knowledge within the framework of the recent developments in building information modeling (BIM). In this article, comparisons to the approach taken by the software engineering industry who embraced the idea of “patterns” as a systematic way to software development are also made. While Alexander’s pattern language proposes a method with which the designer can incorporate his/her experiences and design vision systematically into the process of designing, software industry’s approach to patterns describes a method for providing problem and solution patterns (i.e. prototypes) that can be used repeatedly during software development. There is obviously a significant difference between the original intent of the “pattern language” and the way it was later used in other fields including software engineering and business solutions. At the cross section of architectural design and software engineering, Building Information Modeling (BIM) software can benefit from carefully incorporating a combination of these two approaches into its structure as patterns.
keywords Building information modeling, Christopher Alexander, pattern language, software development
series eCAADe
full text file.pdf (582,315 bytes)
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