Alexander is an AestheticRealist

I think my conversation with Tayssir here : is http://discuss.joelonsoftware.com/default.asp?best04.8.18748.2 is also worth a glance. Why does Alexander go down better with software people than urban planners? Maybe because, to a certain extent, programmers are more in control / have more freedom to design and construct, than urbanists. In practice, urban planning is just local politics, with no larger scale design at all.

(p.144) Nature is never modular - leading towards idea of objects

(p.159) Generative process,

Egoless (without the will of the maker)

following patterns

(p.164) Essential that the people of a society together ...

but must be under deeper regulation ... ie PatternLanguage

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In a semi-lattice, such overlaps are possible, though of course, hierarchies are a subset of semi-lattices. It's the distinction that Alexander is interested in. Alexander then goes on to show how many designs for cities and many new cities (including Brasilia) are in fact trees.

See also HowBuildingsLearn, BillSeitz:ChristopherAlexander, BillSeitz:AlexanderPatterns