Call for Papers for Special Issue of the Communications of the ACM on Design Patterns and Pattern Languages

Guest Editors:

Dr. Douglas C. Schmidt
Dr. Ralph E. Johnson
Dr. Mohamed E. Fayad

The Communications of the ACM invites papers for a theme issue on patterns and pattern languages. Patterns capture the static and dynamic aspects of successful solutions to problems that arise when building software systems. A complete pattern language guides analysts, designers, and programmers to produce workable software that solves common organizational and development problems.

Mature engineering disciplines have handbooks that describe successful solutions to known problems. Automobile designers don't design cars using the laws of physics, they adapt adequate solutions from the handbook known to work well enough. The extra few percent of performance available by starting from scratch typically isn't worth the cost.

Patterns can form the basis for the handbook of software engineering. If software is to become an engineering discipline, successful practices must be systematically documented and widely disseminated. Once expressed in the pattern form, software solutions may be recast in new contexts to facilitate the widespread reuse of (micro-)architecture, detailed designs, algorithms, and implementations.

Patterns are important tools for documenting successful practices and improving software quality by addressing fundamental challenges in software system development. Challenges addressed by design patterns include communication of architectural knowledge among developers, accommodating a new design paradigm or architectural style, and avoiding development traps and pitfalls that have traditionally been learned only by experience.

We are soliciting papers of a practical nature. The CACM special issue will focus primarily on concrete patterns spanning a range of topics, including (but not limited to) the following:

Authors are also encouraged to describe their experiences using patterns and pattern languages as a vehicle for building reusable object-oriented frameworks and components, techniques for discovering and documenting patterns, as well as integrating pattern-based reuse strategies into the software development process. Questions regarding the suitability of a topic should be sent to,, or

Click here to learn more about design patterns.

Click here or here to access online pattern descriptions.

Click here to obtain information about an OOPSLA'95 Workshop on design patterns for concurrent, parallel, and distributed object-oriented systems.

The deadline for papers is November 13th, 1995. Authors will be notified in February 1996. The theme issue will appear in October 1996.

The papers submitted for review should be between 10-14 pages long (around 5,000 words). Since the paper size is relatively small we encourage authors to submit supplement materials, such as documentation and detailed implementation of their patterns. All submissions should identify a principal contact author by e-mail address and/or fax and/or telephone number and postal address. Please send 8 hard-copies of your submission to one of the following editors:

Dr. Douglas C. Schmidt
Jolley Hall, Room 536
Computer Science Dept
Washington University
Campus Box 1045
One Brookings Drive
St. Louis, Missouri 63130-4899
(TEL): (314) 935-7538
(FAX): (314) 935-7302

Dr. Ralph Johnson
Dept. of Computer Science
University of Illinois
1304 W. Springfield Ave.
Urbana, IL 61801
(TEL): (217) 244-0093
(FAX): (217) 333-3501

Dr. Mohamed E. Fayad
Computer Science Dept.
Bldg LME, Room 308
University of Nevada
Reno, NV 89557
(TEL) (702) 784-4356

Authors of accepted papers will be expected to sign an ACM copyright release form.

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