Sometimes it helps to think in terms of design patterns.
10 years ago, a friend
of mine offered me a book on architectural patterns by Christopher
Alexander (A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction) I
remember beautifully simple description of architectural patterns in
buildings such as: a place by the window (inside a house) or a "high
place" to look around town, or avoid X junctions, keep only T junctions
in residential areas.
How about statistical patterns?