Questions related to the use of technical language.

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2
votes
4answers
358 views

An unlikely but very bad event (technical word)

I'm looking for a word that describes an event or situation that is problematic but unusual. The word should indicate that something is theoretically possible, but so unlikely that you could ignore ...
5
votes
3answers
478 views

What is an “Open loop”?

In "Getting Things Done", David Allen refers to "Open Loops", meaning things that are incomplete. Q: What past reference to an "Open loop" is he alluding to? Is that phrase "Open Loop" something ...
6
votes
8answers
8k views

Is it proper to use the word “bandwidth” as it relates to time allotment?

I'm a web developer and I've often heard other technical and developer types say: Sorry, I don't have the bandwidth to take on your project at this time. I started using the term myself and ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

would this be considered a 'methodology' or a 'method'?

Say I developed something called "Methodology for Establishing Remaining Life of Components". Basically, at work, we have components (or equipment). I wanted to develop a way to identify how much ...
3
votes
4answers
499 views

“Iterate” and “iteration” as nouns

What are the differences between iterate and iteration as nouns? I don't quite understand the definition of iterate as noun: A quantity arrived at by iteration For example, in computer ...
0
votes
3answers
80 views

Expression for some special SQL queries

While I'm not native English speaker, I often need to express myself in English. For a week, I have been searching for a term which represents a kind of SQL query: SELECT something FROM somewhere ...
0
votes
2answers
72 views

Which is better: “bidirectionally-anonymous channel” or “bidirectional-anonymous channel”

I am writing my thesis (in computer science) and me and my supervisor disagree about the correct way of describing a communication channel which is anonymous in both directions. Without delving in too ...
2
votes
2answers
109 views

Degrees of Criticality / Lateness or whatever

I am writing a Web Application where I am going to list certain events and their overdue days. If an event is overdue by less than 10 days then its safe. If it is overdue by over 10 days but less than ...
2
votes
6answers
1k views

What's another way to say “problem area”?

Looking for some powerful, formal words with a slight negative connotation for a resume/performance assessment. The general context pertains to computer software development. These aren't my problem ...
0
votes
1answer
38 views

Most appropriate term for round and x-marker on a (scientific) chart?

In a research paper, I'd like to refer to some specific markers on a chart. One marker looks like an x, and the other one is small circle. What would be proper terms? Circular marker and x-marker?
1
vote
3answers
113 views

Looking for two terms from law vocabulary

I'm looking for two technical words used in law: Someone who accepts the law, they will try to do the best things in any situation. The opposite of number one, they reject any law and at every ...
5
votes
2answers
143 views

How to say: “this number has not been rounded”?

Let's say I count some items and the result is exactly 1000. How do I convey the fact that the actual count was 1000, and that I didn't round the number? It should fit into a sentence like "Overall, ...
1
vote
2answers
265 views

Is 'Mochup' the same as 'Mock-up'?

I recently came across the word 'mochup'. I am unsure if this is simply a spelling mistake of the term 'mock-up', or if it is a technical neologism with a slightly different meaning. Searching on ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

What should I do when two clauses that must be in parenthesis sit next to each other in my sentence?

I'm writing my thesis dissertation and in the results section I'm showing my results with this sentence: A small correlation between hit position and time was found for SS2 ($r=-0.143, ...
3
votes
2answers
775 views

Is there such a word as “lightweightness”?

Is there a good translation for the German word "Leichtgewichtigkeit" (lit. "lightweightness")? According to leo.org and dict.cc, there is none, but according to these translations, there are ...
5
votes
7answers
2k views

How to choose between British and American English for technical documents

I'm not a native English speaker. I'm Italian and I'm doing my thesis in the Netherlands. I have to write technical documents for non-native English speakers, so I didn't receive any advice for ...
0
votes
1answer
110 views

Hyphen for re when doing again [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Hyphens in verb construction containing prefix such as “re” Adding a prefix "re" to a word, with or without a hyphen? I have a question about the use of the prefix 're', ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Why is “the test is failed” acceptable?

In software interfaces, technical documentation, scientific documentation and legal documents, I see phrases like: The build is failed. The test is failed. If the test is failed,... It ...
2
votes
4answers
304 views

Use of “permission” in technical writing

In a request for proposal (RFP) I am attempting to edit the following sentence-fragment which isn't grammatically correct: "...except for staff permissioned to update..." My problem is with the ...
8
votes
3answers
380 views

Morally speaking, 1+1=2

I asked a question over on math.SE and as part of an exchange someone said: Morally the function is csc φ in the limit for the reason you mention. ...a pretty funny thing to say. I asked them ...
15
votes
4answers
11k views

Why is the term “depressed” often used to describe a button which is pressed?

In several books that mention GUI, keyboard, or mouse buttons (e.g. the book Programming Windows by Charles Petzold), the authors refer to the state of a pressed button as depressed. Why is this term ...
5
votes
5answers
494 views

“Plugable” or “pluggable”

When it comes to programming copy edits, there are lots of words that would otherwise be thrown out or replaced. Hive uses a plugable design. Should that be plugable or pluggable? If the ...
2
votes
4answers
621 views

What is the shortest term to refer to people whose mother tongue is English?

What is the shortest term to refer to representatives of peoples and cultures whose mother tongue is English? Mothertonguers? Update: Can't I call them joe?
0
votes
0answers
45 views

what do you call this symbol @ [duplicate]

do you call it the 'at' symbol or at the rate of or something else? I know the dictionary answer, more interested in the colloquial. Has a look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/At_sign but it just ...
1
vote
3answers
362 views

“Above” or “later” when referencing a range of versions of software

Which is correct when referencing an operating system version "OS X 10.6.x and later" or "OS X 10.6.x and above"? Bonus points for providing the why.
40
votes
7answers
3k views

Is there a difference between “disc” and “disk” for naming digital storage media?

I thought that a disc was a disc, and it is sometimes spelled disk. I now have got an indication that those two are not the same thing. In this answer on Graphic DesignBeta, I wrote floppy disc in ...
1
vote
1answer
310 views

Correct use of “proof-of-concept” [closed]

In writing a technical paper, I'm wondering about the correct use of proof-of-concept. In short, the situation is that we have developed an application/tool to show the feasibility of a new approach ...
5
votes
2answers
714 views

Pronunciation of GUI in British English

I've heard a lot of Americans pronounce abbreviations like GUI as goo-ey. Is this the same with British English, or is it more common to spell out the word, like gee-you-eye?
1
vote
1answer
86 views

Is there a term for how old films appear to wiggle on screen, if only slightly?

I was watching some of Charlie Chaplin's videos and couldn't help wondering what caused them to look as though the cameraman had unsteady hands. But obviously, it's not the cameraman's fault, ...
1
vote
4answers
146 views

a computer program does what for the user - Technical writing [closed]

I am writing a technical document and, I have a module called "Pre-policy Module" which is a web application(like, say, facebook). What could be appropriate to say in a sentence like this: The ...
0
votes
2answers
70 views

What voice should I use when explaining how to program a computer? [closed]

I'm planning on writing a blog about computer programming, and I'm having trouble finding the right voice. I'm looking for something that feels personal and conversational. Third person seems sterile, ...
3
votes
2answers
105 views

Can I grow some gratitude?

Just curious, normally if a person is not appreciating another person that's helping him, the person can tell him to show some gratitude. But how about "grow some gratitude"? It implies the person has ...
13
votes
2answers
389 views

What is the technical term for the area within a fort?

I would like to know what is the name of the area within a trace italienne fortification, i.e. item 38 in the image here below (which unfortunately was omitted in Wikipedia):
-4
votes
1answer
493 views

Technical writing sentence correction/suggestion [closed]

Is the following sentence grammatically correct? What could be an appropriate form to imply the similar meaning in technical writing? Use one of the following relations depending on whether X is ...
0
votes
4answers
384 views

Less than or below when comparing to a limit

When I am comparing a numeric value to a numeric limit, as in a maximum value, should I say the value is "below the limit" or "less than the limit"? Specifically, I am saying, "the maximum ...
2
votes
4answers
355 views

“To latch in a recess/groove” vs. “to catch in a recess/groove”

Is there a difference in meaning when used in a technical context? For example, does a fork latch in a recess when pressed or does it catch in the recess?
3
votes
2answers
437 views

Technical terminology for a non-technical audience

In documentation for a non-technical audience, I was asked about usage around the term "regular expression." My colleague was asking if one of "RegEx", "Regex" or "regex" would be preferable, I ...
1
vote
2answers
165 views

Is “solutioning” a correct word in a technical context? [closed]

I'm a translator from English into Italian language. While translating a British patent I found the following sentence: The large heat treatment window seen in the ThermoCalc simulation also ...
3
votes
2answers
241 views

Can “installation” be used to mean software installed in a computer?

Can "installation" be used to mean software installed in a computer? (e.g. portable or stand-alone USB installation) Example sentence: This feature works in my standard installation of the software, ...
1
vote
0answers
414 views

Alternatives for computer programming terms, for better understanding [closed]

There are several words in computer science which seem quite easy to understand, but when you just mix them with their application, they look more and more complex. I have seen many people who are new ...
9
votes
1answer
204 views

Origin of word “pad” in the mixing/recording industry

I ask this assuming there are enough people with experience with electric instruments, mixers, and other recording equipment to make this relevant. On any mixer, one of the first buttons that can be ...
2
votes
6answers
739 views

Is 'low speed' finally proving its merit?

Technically, you should expect the term low speed, not slow speed (which is obviously illogical). However, it seems the two phrases co-existed as long as one can look back: with low speed fighting ...
1
vote
2answers
81 views

Alternative to “accessible”

In the context of a technical manual, engineers use the word "accessible" to indicate that a piece of hardware should have "easy access" for repair, maintenance, and other modifications. What would ...
2
votes
5answers
4k views

Replacement for ‘at the example of ’

I’m currently searching for the title of my research thesis and I can’t find a good phrase. I did a “Systematic Analysis of fruit growth” in a generic way and additionally applied the analysis to ...
0
votes
1answer
101 views

What do you call the maximum number of recent values used for calculating an average [closed]

A sensor measures some physical quantity (like temperature). The measured value is tapped every 100ms or so. An average is calculated over the x most recently measured values. I.e. with every new ...
2
votes
3answers
148 views

Is the meaning of “support” in “<product X> supports <feature Y>” commonly understood?

There are numerous examples of the verb support meaning "to be capable of": IE9 supports HTML5. The database doesn’t support transactions. The GPS navigator supports spoken voice directions. I ...
2
votes
1answer
171 views

Subject of a commit message (in software engineering) [closed]

Each time I need to write a commit message for a git/svn repository, I wonder what the subject of the sentence should be, whether it should be: the author of the commit (for example, "I added the ...
3
votes
2answers
250 views

Jig or template to hold a workpiece

Technical English for a foreigner - please correct and rephrase if you can come up with better alternatives. A machine in manufacturing usually is fed material or a workpiece to be processed. ...
-1
votes
2answers
660 views

No quotation mark in a book?

So I just bought this book 'Requiem for a dream' and I just "found out" that there is no quotation mark in the book in a conversation. So it's up to me to tell when the converstation started by who! ...
0
votes
1answer
174 views

Prefixing a two-word technical term with “sub-”

I have the term "verification code" and need a term for a particular code that is part of it. Normally, if the term were only "code", I'd use "subcode". How would I correctly prefix "verification ...