Invitation To The Patterns List

The following item was posted to the PatternsList on May 1, 1995.

Friends -- I've always been interested in the way programming ideas are carried by people as they move between projects. I once set out to document this flow for one company in a HyperCard stack. Of course I didn't finish, but, I had a lot of fun trying.

Well, I've come to call those programming ideas "patterns". And I've put together a new database to give the project another try. You can help. The plan is to have interested parties write web pages about the People, Projects and Patterns that have changed the way they program. Short stories that hint at patterns are welcome too. And there is an easy way to add your own bio as one of the RecentVisitors.

The database is made available to the web through a "common gateway interface" that includes forms for authoring. You don't need to know HTML to add or modify pages. You just string words together to make links. When you say something like AlanKay or SmalltalkCompiler or DoubleDispatch the database knows to look under that key for more information. Point your browser at...

for the general welcome, or ...

which is a good point of entry for the frequent visitor.

The writing style is casual, like email or netnews, but doesn't have to be so repetitive since the things being discussed don't disappear. Think of it as a moderated list where anyone can be moderator and everything is archived. It's not quite a chat, still, conversation is possible. I'll close this note with a pattern, PromptingStatement, I first noticed while "conversing" through the database.

-- WardCunningham


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