The use of English in science.

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10answers
2k views

Can a fact be 'biased'? [on hold]

Apropos of this baffling exchange I had with a right-wing 'Brexit' supporter on on Twitter yesterday I'd like to know if my definition of a fact ('a thing that is known or proven to be true') is ...
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1answer
56 views

Equivalent to “pairwise” for a triplet [closed]

Pairwise may describe the process of comparing entities in pairs. What is the word for the process of describing the comparison of entities in triplet?
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1answer
51 views

Word for flying, stinging/biting insects

Today an insect was flying around me and my family but I wasn't sure what type of insect it was. I could tell from the noise that the wings were making while it was flying that it was some type of bee ...
4
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3answers
62 views

A futuristic Phobia in the scientific context (Related to Artificial Intelligence)

Is there any specific term to describe a phobia about future of relationship between humans and (intelligent) machines? One may think it could be Cyberphobia or Mechanophobia, however these options ...
0
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1answer
18 views

Difference between “phenomenological” and “empirical”

Models in science are sometimes called "phenomenological" and sometimes "empirical." Looking at the definitions of these two words, I feel like they are really saying the same thing: that the model is ...
2
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1answer
62 views

How to pronounce the names of supersymmetric partner particles of fermions

The names of supersymmetric partner particles of fermions are formed by s- + the name of the normal particle. E.g.: sparticle sfermion squark sup sdown scharm sstrange stop sbottom slepton ...
0
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1answer
22 views

Capitalization after colons in a list

I have read about the rules for capitalization of colons and the varying rules depending on region and culture. So I decided to use the supposedly British grammar and only capitalize nouns or acronyms ...
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1answer
28 views

Scientific Nomenclature: italics or roman in an italic environment

Scientific Nomenclature says that: Italics are used for bacterial and viral taxa at the level of family and below. All bacterial and many viral genes are italicized. Serovars of Salmonella ...
4
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3answers
109 views

Difference between “rule” and “law” in scientific context

In general, according to an article in DifferenceBetween.net The main difference between rules and laws is the consequences associated with breaking them. While each is developed to invoke a ...
0
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1answer
66 views

Capitalisation of “Nature”

Why is "Nature" usually spelt with a capital letter at the beginning in scientific journals? I am mainly referring to life science here, in case this matters. I am not talking about the obvious cases,...
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2answers
47 views

Active voice in mathematical physics derivation

Im currently writing an undergraduate physics report, collaborating with a large group of people. One of our sections requires some LONG lagrangian derivations for various systems. Now, everyone ...
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0answers
55 views

What is the word origin for “ortho-,” “meta-,” and “para-” in chemistry?

The prefix "ortho-" means straight or right; "meta-" means beyond or after; "para-" means beside or along. How, then, did ortho-, meta- and para- come to refer to the carbon positions one, two, and ...
0
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1answer
64 views

Usage of the abbreviation resp. in scientific writing

Is it a good practice to use the abbreviation resp. for respectively in scientific writing ? Let consider the following sentence as example. "The word size (resp., word length) is defined as the ...
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1answer
31 views

Is the sequence of words “modulus like parameter” meaningful?

Does the sequence of words "modulus like parameter" mean that the involved parameter can be considered as a modulus even though it can be something different in some cases ?
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0answers
91 views

Better way to say “A which is called B” in a title

I am writing a scientific paper about computer Shogi. At the end of the title I want to say something like: "...for Japanese Chess Which is Called Shogi" I initial put: "...for Japanese Chess, ...
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2answers
66 views

Words describing constancy

Using only a single word in each case, I'm attempting to describe two different variations involving constancy of a certain attribute: Variation of an object without changing its weight. Variation ...
0
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2answers
66 views

Can some refer pseudoscience by quasi-science? [closed]

reference link for the difference between pseudo and quasi at pseudo, quasi and semi Thanks to stack exchange [users] for making it clearer. Meanwhile, i found another useful blog defining the terms ...
2
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2answers
74 views

Usage of 'that much more' in a scientific article

Would it be acceptable to use the phrase "that much more" in the context of a scientific article? Basically, I want to convey this: "The results were obtained doing A. We expect that doing B, taking ...
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1answer
55 views

“time” for instants or durations in science

I am trying to describe the evolution of a motion which is composed of smooth parts called "free flights" and instantaneous impacts. For example, consider a bouncing ball: its motion is a succession ...
7
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3answers
289 views

Is there a hypernym for acidity and basicity?

I was wondering if there was a single word for what the pH scale measures, with no particular bias to either the acidic end (acidity) or basic end (basicity) of the spectrum. From Wikipedia: In ...
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0answers
59 views

What is the meaning of the phrase “Signal Advance?”

I posted this question, “Signal Advance”: Unsure of meaning or contextual use, on Biology SE, as the phrase was used in a biology text that I am reading, Recombinant DNA; Genes and Genomes - A Short ...
0
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1answer
83 views

Using '+' and '-' with numbers

The convention for units is to leave a space after the number, for example, 'the average temperature of the human body is 37.0 °C.' But what if I need to explicitly state whether a number is positive ...
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3answers
82 views

What is an antonym for dense in the context of material properties?

I am looking for an antonym for dense in the context of material properties. Specifically, bulk materials which possess negligible porosity, i.e. sound materials. An example usage sentence might be ...
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1answer
135 views

What is the English word used to describe something like m/s or m/s/s ? [closed]

In science, some quantities have units. e.g. Mass (kg) , time (s), distance (m). But what about quantities such as velocity (m/s) and acceleration (m/s/s) whose units are a combination of ...
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2answers
196 views

What is the difference between 'ad hoc' and 'heuristic'? [closed]

In engineering people tend to (at least in my mind) use these two terms pretty loosely. Now I don't care about the informal slang usage of the term, I just wish to know what is the difference in their ...
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2answers
133 views

What is this word in 19th century dictionary? [closed]

I was reading a passage from P. Austin Nuttall's 1869 book, Dictionary of Scientific Terms, and from what it looks like, in both the PDF and Page images views, the word seems to be pseudostella. ...
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2answers
101 views

Meteor & Meteorite is to Meteoroid as A & B is to Asteroid?

In astronomy, A meteoroid is what it is called before it enters a planet's atmosphere, A meteor is what it is called after it enters a planet's atmosphere but before it hits the surface, and A ...
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2answers
261 views

Is there a more generic word for “space objects” (not counting human-made or massive objects)?

Basically, objects like Asteroids Meteoroids Meteors Meteorites Comets Etc. As stated in the title, this also doesn't count human-made objects, such as Space junk Satellites, Space stations, ...
2
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1answer
108 views

Is there a word for “awesomely extremely useful”, used for an idea?

I'm looking for a synonym of useful, with a maximum grateful attitude. It is not a person to be thanked, but an idea. It mostly a breakthrough idea, but breakthrough is not what I'm looking for. I ...
1
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1answer
48 views

Italic format usage [duplicate]

When I was reading some articles, I noticed that they use the italic format for some words. Could you please tell me when I have to use it ? Also, sometimes they used the quotation marks “…” and "..."...
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3answers
142 views

Etymology of “cluster analysis” – why “cluster”?

I'm trying to track down the origins of the word "cluster" and its usage in the context of cluster analysis. Please, does anyone know when and by whom it was first used? Perhaps there was a paper or ...
2
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2answers
37 views

Specifying notation with introductory clauses

When writing technical papers I often write sentences like: Where m denotes the proper mass of an object and c denotes the speed of light, the object's rest energy is given by E=mc2. However I ...
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0answers
93 views

Present Perfect Progressive in scientific writing?

Scientific writing is generally supposed to be written in present tense (focus on proof of the existence of the result, not how the author arrived at it). However, I have a case where this results in ...
2
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1answer
59 views

Periodical change of quantities from zero to a specific value

I need to find a word which will describe the periodic change of a quantity from zero to a positive value. I explicitly need to differentiate this word or expression from the periodic change of the ...
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0answers
36 views

Intricate example of usage of word “respectively”

I am uncertain about the most appropriate location of the word "respectively" in the following example. Please note that models M2 and M3 are referring to the two models in which condition A was ...
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1answer
147 views

“will be …” vs. “are presented in section …” (tenses in scientific writing)

I'm writing my bachelor thesis in English in a German language environment so I was unable to get help from my supervisor on language related questions (neither of the languages is my first language). ...
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3answers
90 views

Plural of “Mechanism of Action”

I'm trying to determine the plural form of the scientific term "Mechanism of Action". I'm pretty sure the answer is, "Mechanisms of Action", but the term "Mechanisms of Actions" is disturbingly ...
2
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2answers
328 views

General technical term that uncontroversially encompasses both bacteria and viruses

We can speak of "microbes" or "micro-organisms," and I used to think that these terms clearly included viruses. And they are used this way by at least some other people; here's a website that refers ...
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2answers
105 views

Transmit Power vs. Transmission Power, is there a difference [closed]

I was reading a scientific paper, and the authors sometimes use the term "transmit power" and sometimes "transmission power". Is there a difference in terms of correct English usage? Examples: ...
2
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3answers
956 views

How do you explain cubic growth of a function

When reading scientific papers I have seen people explain the growth of a variable linearly, exponentially. However how would one say for a variable which grows in quadratic fashion, or cubic? I don'...
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1answer
404 views

Referring to figures other than with “as depicted in” [closed]

I’m currently writing my first English scientific paper and am repeatedly using as depicted in when referring to a figure or table in the text. Can you tell me some alternatives to that phrase?
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3answers
119 views

A word for evidence used to tell if someone has been in your room

I know there's an actual word for this. I used to know the word, but I've lost it. The word describes a category of methods that someone uses to detect if someone has been in a room, or opened a door,...
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0answers
33 views

What is the scientific name to humour that is based on surprise [duplicate]

I remember browsing through Wikipedia one day, and coming across an article defining surprise-based humour. The article had a very specific scientific name, which doesn't have the actual word "...
1
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1answer
251 views

Difference between Paper and Article for scientific writings

As I know, in most of situations (in scientific context) these two terms are used to point to same thing and even they are used interchangeably. For example, Theory of value with public goods: A ...
0
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1answer
825 views

What do “source” and “sink” mean? [closed]

I do not understand "source" and "sink" in the following passage. I tried to look up a dictionary and google translate but it is not clear. Could anyone explain it for me? the passage: This ...
0
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1answer
471 views

Words for ordinal 5-point scale from normal to severe

What are good words for a five-point ordinal scale? The scale should represent increasing severity of disease, where 1 is normal and 5 is severe. I thought of the following words (with their value in ...
4
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3answers
458 views

Grammar - Scientific English (Physics) [duplicate]

I have a question about scientific English. I wonder when to use the article "the" when you refer to a physical quantity or to a formula. I promise that I have looked into so many manuals, but I am ...
0
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2answers
46 views

Instantiate a Video Player?

I am writing a technical report where a number of video players are being loaded on a webpage. Is it correct to say, "Instantiate a video player on the web page," or just, "Load a video player on the ...
2
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6answers
199 views

In science writing, what to call the body in relation to the brain?

The word "body" is problematic when writing about the brain. Look at these two sentences: "The brain sends signals to the body." "The brain is an organ in the body." The first sentence considers ...
0
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1answer
65 views

Correct use of expressing unit

Which one is correct to use: mmHg or mm Hg? Should it be closed up, spaced out or both are acceptable? The AMA manual has both instances. For example, "The trial compared outcomes associated with '...