An architectural style is an abstraction - not a concrete thing. Take, for example,a Gothic cathedral. The cathedral is different from the Gothic architectural style. The Gothic style defines the attributes or characteristics you would see in a cathedral built in that style. Comparatively, the National Institute of Standards (NIST) and the National Electrical Codes (NEC) are governing bodies that produce rules we recognize as standards. If you failed to wire a building correctly, the place could burn down to the ground. People often get confused between standards - that which we know is right or wrong - and styles; a particular mode of expression. On the Internet, REST is a style and Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is a standard. REST relies on stateless, client-server cacheable communications protocols like HTTP to facilitate application development. By applying REST design principles to a protocol, such as HTTP, developers can build interfaces that can be used from nearly any device or operating system.
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- Styles described by constraints;
- Ensuring connectors work together;
- Creating software that spans lifetimes.