Overview of Design Patterns

Get an overview of why we need design patterns.


Software developers face problems every day during development. These problems are generally one of two types:

  • Unique problems that don’t follow any specific pattern.
  • Recurring problems that follow some sort of pattern.

Design patterns were introduced specifically for the recurring problems faced by the developers.

What is a design pattern?

Design patterns are recipes that programmers use to solve a specific set of problems. A design pattern is not a piece of code we can copy into our application to solve the problem. Instead, it’s a recipe to tackle the problem. Let’s formally define what a design pattern is. Wikipedia says: “In software engineering, a software design pattern is a general, reusable solution to a commonly occurring problem within a given context in software design.”

Before moving on, let’s answer the question, “Why do we need to use design patterns?”

Why do we need a design pattern?

There are many reasons to use design patterns, including:

  • They provide us with a common vocabulary and well-defined semantics, making inter- and intra-team communication much easier.
  • Tackling a problem as a whole is always difficult in programming. Design patterns divide the problem into small, digestible steps that are easy to solve and already proven.
  • Already knowing the steps involved in solving a problem helps us get to our solution faster.
  • They inspire solutions and are not tied to any specific problem, and they can be applied to solve the same problem in various domains/ applications.
  • They discourage reinventing the wheel. One design pattern used by an experienced programmer can be reused in similar projects, increasing the reusability of the code.

Design patterns are not a mandatory part of software development, but they make our lives a lot easier. From communication to reusability, design patterns can become reliable tools for a programmer in software development.

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