Software Design and Architecture has been a prominent field of work since the late 70's. But only in the last decade or so have designers/developers (on a larger scale) realized some of its best practices.
Software design patterns pretty much dictate the quality of good software design. You know you are on the right track, when you have followed good design patterns and avoided anti-patterns. One can further say, that they pretty much dictate the design phase of projects.
Dictators are not likened by people in real life, but design patterns are here to stay and likened.
Put its good old friend - agile practices and you have a great team to work with. Finally follow some good principles like the good OOAD principles, Unce Bob maintains. Also, Martin Fowler's site is full of many goodies for the agile developer.
© 2008 Vishal V. Shah. All rights reserved. Contents of this web site reflect my personal work and is not representative of my employer.