Pattern Language and domes
From: Mike Malone (
Date: Fri, 25 Apr 1997 08:08:54 -0500
Well, mostly about Alexander's Pattern Language. I think it is 
important to remember that the Pattern language books are not THE 
TRUTH. They contain some interesting and useful ideas, but not every 
idea is useful or appropriate to different lifestyle and climates. 
For example, long narrow houses and central atriums or coutyards are 
not appropriate for cold climates. The main criteria for any design for 
housing should be whether it feels, looks, and lives right for the 
people who will live in it.  Othe important criteria are how well it 
fits the surrounding enviroment, the amount of resources it consumes 
to build and use, and how pleasing it is to look at for other people 
that need to look at it. The weight of these last criteria will vary 
depending the critics viewpoint.
My personal experience with dome is mostly pleasent. I find the 
circular space (in 3 dimenitions) wonderful. I have not lived in a 
dome except as a guest though. One thing I have noticed in domes is 
unusual acoustics. Quitely spoken words can be heard clearly across 
the dome, while nearly inaudible closer to the speaker. Apparently 
the curved surfaces act as reflecters that focus the sound.

Michael Malone
Cancer Control Section
Minnesota Department of Health
Internet address:  michael.malone [at]
Phone: (612)623-5670
Fax: (612)623-5520

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