Chapter 7: The Past, Present, and Future of Patterns

Philosopher of science James Burke is fond of noting that history rarely happens in the right order or at the right time, but the job of a historian is to make it appear as if it did. One benefit of writing a series of Pattern-Oriented Software Architecture (POSA) books is we have the opportunity to revisit our earlier predictions, summarize what actually occurred, and examine why it occurred the way it did.

This chapter revisits our 1996 forecasts on ``where patterns will go'' that appeared in the first volume of the POSA series, A System of Patterns. We discuss the directions that patterns actually took during the past four years, analyze where patterns are now, and revise our vision about their future given the benefit of hindsight.