Sunday, October 26, 2003

Pattern Language

In our age of abundant (often overwhelming) information on a wide range of topics, it becomes increasingly important to organize it in a way that allows for (a) comprehensive information and (b) easy access to a particular aspect of the information.

I have found two approaches that seems to each allow for this. One is the pattern language approach (applied to design and sustainability. See also WikiPedia). The other Ken Wilber's all-quadrants, all-levels approach (Ken Wilber, map).

There seems to be several similarities between these two mapping tools: (a) They use a holarchical approach, including all scales from the largest to the smallest. (b) They look at patterns as they apply to each level, and in the various areas within each level. (c) They look for similarities and differences in the patterns that emerge at the different levels and areas.

I had a conversation tonight about a "best practices" book that may be written about intentional communities. It seems that a combined pattern language and all-quadrants, all-levels approach may be a very useful organization. It would allow for just what I hope to find in these types of books - comprehensive information, and simplicity in identifying any particular piece of the information (thorugh logical, holarchical, organization).