I was reading the following page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microservices

On this page they write both microservice architecture and microservices architecture.

But also: microservice-based architecture and microservices-based architecture.

Can anyone explain to me why all these four options are correct and used? The adjective should be neither singular nor plural.

1 Answer 1


Microservice(s) is not an adjective.

It is a noun being used as a modifier. We can do this in English, and they don't become adjcetives.

Words used as modifiers tend to lose their grammatical inflections (cross-linguistically), but this is only a tendency, not a hard rule.

  • So microservice architecture and microservices architecture are the same, and the first option is the most used? (And, in general, all the four options above are correct?)
    – LJG
    Sep 12, 2022 at 20:26
  • I don't know if they're the same or not. Looking for exact meanings (and distinctions of meanings) in phrases like this is usually a waste of time. (They might be used distinctly in precise ways in one publication, but the next publication may use them differently). "Based" in a phrase like this often means mothing at all, but it might mean something in a particular case. The iWeb corpus has "Microservice Architecture": 373; "Microservices A": 592; "M based A": 5; "Ms base A": 3; so your second option seems to be the most common.
    – Colin Fine
    Sep 12, 2022 at 20:36

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