I.e. something that doesn't employ separation of concerns / use any form of UI architecture such as MVC, MVP etc.

An example would be a Windows form that had a button which, once pressed (user interaction), grabs data from a database (model), checks it against some business logic and then updates the UI, but all of this written as a single function / all in one class.

One could say badly designed, but I'm sure there is a more appropriate term.

I've come across it termed as Widget-based UI, but this doesn't seem correct.

  • I believe Fowler and Evans both call this a "Smart UI" architecture Mar 20, 2018 at 17:05

2 Answers 2


The generic term for an application that lacks any sort of architecture is a Big Ball of Mud:

A big ball of mud is a software system that lacks a perceivable architecture. Although undesirable from a software engineering point of view, such systems are common in practice due to business pressures, developer turnover and code entropy. They are a type of design anti-pattern.



  1. The UI form was generated automatically from the domain model
  2. The database is an object DB or is accessed via an ORM

Then this might be considered an example of the Naked Objects pattern. Which isn't necessarily "bad" or "mud", assuming they follow other good practices such as not putting this all into one giant function.

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