This week we launched a new Web column at MSDN Magazine, called Patterns in Practice. Written by veteran developer and author Peter Vogel, the new column looks at how patterns can be applied to specific programming challenges. In his inaugural column, titled “Adding Functionality to an Object,” Vogel looks at an application managing sales orders, and how the client can dynamically add permitted functionality to an object as it is needed.

As Vogel explains in the opening paragraphs of his first column, he’ll kick off each column by presenting a business problem and discussing a few less-than-optimal solutions, before diving into “a solution that addresses the problem in a testable/maintainable way, based on some design pattern.” After that, Vogel writes, he’ll build out the design to explore the meaning of the pattern, before going on to implement the solution.

As Vogel points out, design patterns can provide “an object-oriented template for solving typical business applications.” But these benefits don’t’ come without cost. Choose the wrong design pattern, he says, and you can end up with objects that actually make your life harder, and force constant code rewrites as things change.

Check out this month’s column here.