Lists, tables, or other amalgams of quantitative data (numbers or words) that is used to convey a specific set of instructions, specifications, or qualities about a thing or process.

︎ Proportional System
A proportional system, uses memorized or written ratios to solve geometric problems related to construction. Used throughout the ancient world espeically among Greeks, proportional systems provided divine instructions before the advent of the architect.

Technical StandardA technical standard is a formal document which establish uniformity from the field. These include units of measurements, standard details means and methods. Technical standards are aimed at trades and material performances. Specifications are a way for architects to communicate and reiterate technical standards to builders. The most common technical standard for architects are graphic standards which allow drawings to be read and interpreted. Line weights, line styles and symbols, form a visual coded language.
︎ Building Code
Building codes such as the IBC are written standards for building. First implemented for public safety they have been expanded to ensure a built project meets minimum requirements for accessibility and sustainability.
︎ Zoning
Zoning codes can specify allowed use, building types, styles, height, and floor area ratio (FAR), for the development of a region. Often written by urban planners for architects, they come from outside the discipline determine the building envelope.

︎ Data Structures
Value tables, flow charts, and computer code are assemblies of information that can be read either by a human or machine user. The rules for understanding the data structure is often not embedded in the data itself and instead relies on past experience or software to decipher the data. Most software uses a proprietary file format and data structure, shared file types across platforms allows communication between architects and trades.
︎ Natural Language
Languages that evolved naturally in humans through use are considered natural languages. They are the unplanned result of the desire to communicate. Used in conjunction with drawing and graphic standards, it remains one of the most effective ways architects communicate their ideas.