A pattern, from the French patron, is a type of theme of recurring events or objects, sometimes referred to as elements of a set of objects.
The elements of a pattern repeat in a predictable manner. Patterns can be based on a template or model which generates pattern elements, especially if the elements have enough in common for the underlying pattern to be inferred, in which case the things are said to exhibit the unique pattern. There are many different patterns in the world.
The most basic patterns, called Tessellations, are based on repetition and periodicity. In tessellation, a single template, tile, or cell is repeated without change or modification, usually in two dimensions to form a flat patterned surface.
Other patterns, such as Penrose tiling and Pongal or Kolam patterns from India, use symmetry which is a form of finite repetition, instead of translation which can repeat to infinity. Fractal patterns also use magnification or scaling giving an effect known as self-similarity or scale invariance. Some plants, like Ferns, generate a pattern using an affine transformation which combines translation, scaling, rotation and reflection.
A different kind of pattern generator is a simple harmonic oscillator, which produces repeated movements in time.
Pattern matching is the act of checking for the presence of the constituents of a pattern, whereas the detecting for underlying patterns is referred to as pattern recognition. The question of how a pattern emerges is accomplished through the work of the scientific field of pattern formation.
Pattern recognition is more complex when templates are used to generate variants. For example, in English, sentences often follow the "N-VP" (noun - verb phrase) pattern, but some knowledge of the English language is required to detect the pattern. Computer science, ethology, and psychology are fields which study patterns.
- "A pattern has an integrity independent of the medium by virtue of which you have received the information that it exists. Each of the chemical elements is a pattern integrity. Each individual is a pattern integrity. The pattern integrity of the human individual is evolutionary and not static."
- R. Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983), U.S.American philosopher and inventor, in Synergetics: Explorations in the Geometry of Thinking (1975), Pattern Integrity 505.201
Famous quotes containing the word pattern:
“The worthiest man to be known, and for a pattern to be presented to the world, he is the man of whom we have most certain knowledge. He hath been declared and enlightened by the most clear-seeing men that ever were; the testimonies we have of him are in faithfulness and sufficiency most admirable.”
—Michel de Montaigne (15331592)
“Each child is an adventure into a better lifean opportunity to change the old pattern and make it new.”
—Hubert H. Humphrey (19111978)
“In this lucid and flexible pattern only one thing remained always stationary, but this fallacy went unnoticed by Martha. The blind spot was the victim. The victim showed no signs of life before being deprived of it. If anything, the corpse which had to be moved and handled before burial seemed more active than its biological predecessor.”
—Vladimir Nabokov (18991977)