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Jul
7
comment “Properties” versus “settings”
A "property" is never a method, although its accessors and mutators (its getters and setters) might be. Even if the property is entirely virtual (that is, if it is entirely an artifact of its accessor and is unsettable), the property and its accessor are not the same thing. The property, in that case, is the value returned by the accessor, not the accessor itself. It has always been thus.
Jul
7
comment “Properties” versus “settings”
@Joe Blow: the questions here are often posed by people who are not particularly conversant with English or with a specific subset of the language. The phrase "computer 'object'" is a way of adding context to the question, separating the term "object" from its everyday, physical, meaning. That the question refers to "objects" in the OOP sense of the term seems quite obvious to me.
Jul
7
comment “Properties” versus “settings”
To represent an individual in my program, I create an instance of that class. That instance is an object, and I can set (and later interrogate or change) the properties of that object: name, age, sex, income, job title, and so forth. That's what a "computer object" is. As far as settings goes, the ordinary meaning in computerdom is the same as it is in unwarped world of real people.
Jul
7
comment “Properties” versus “settings”
Unfortunately, while the distinctions given here are true of "real world" objects, they aren't true of the metaphorical objects in the world of software. In the programming world, an object is a specific instance of a class (a definition that can describe any of a number of similar things). For instance, I can create a class named Person that I can use in my program to represent the qualities or aspect of a "real" person sufficient for my program.
Jul
7
comment “Properties” versus “settings”
Every software developer? Not this one -- ever.
Jul
7
comment “Thanks” or “thank you”?
The grammar error that's popping up would probably be cleared by inserting a comma after "Thank you". Although the "thanks" version should probably also have a comma, it has probably been flagged as an informal usage suitable for terse communication.
Jul
7
comment “What it is that is” versus “what is”
To my ear, it's about specificity. This is a call to action, to find your passion and pursue it. The shorter version has the same "meaning" in the meta sense, but it can just as easily be answered by a long and fuzzy list of things that are of only marginal importance.
Jul
6
comment Are there meta-plurals beyond “peoples”?
"A couple of Jewish people" is a plural; so is "the Jewish people over there". "The Jewish People" is a collective. They're not the same thing, even if the same word is being used.
Jul
6
comment Are there meta-plurals beyond “peoples”?
But people, as a plural of person, is *not a collective noun. It doesn't fit this pattern at all.
Jul
6
comment Are there meta-plurals beyond “peoples”?
People is both a simple plural (the plural of person) and a collective. The two uses have different meanings.
Jul
5
comment What's the opposite of “enlarge”?
Ensmall is a common error. The word is ensmallen. It's the opposite of embiggen. And yes, they're both perfectly cromulent words.
Jul
5
comment Where did the expression “my two cents” come from?
Note, though, that at the time "two penneth" came into use, a farthing (an eighth of a penny) was a useful coin and ha'penny would bring cheer to a beggar at Christmas. "A penny for your thoughts" was a substantial bribe, and giving someone two penneth worth would be something the speaker assessed as being of some worth. Two cents doesn't have quite the same ring to it these days.
Jul
5
comment How would a native British speaker say “Betteredge”?
Either of the two-syllable variants is far more likely than either of the three-syllable versions unless the family attained status by purchasing a manor house and a prefab heritage in the eighteenth century (as parodied in Gilbert and Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance: "Frederic, in this chapel are ancestors: you cannot deny that. With the estate, I bought the chapel and its contents. I don't know whose ancestors they were, but I know whose ancestors they are...")
Jul
4
comment Why is “fastly” not a word?
Thanks, but now my hat won't fit, and I need to find other people to share the burden of carrying my ego around :)
Jul
3
comment Footwear: Runners. Sneakers. Trainers
We Canadians will admit to a lot of oddness, but the use of gutties to describe this class of footwear is something even we would consider beyond the pale. Running shoes and runners are common here, but gutties? Not even in Newf'n'land, b'y.
Jul
2
comment “One of my friends” vs. “one of my friend”
Then again, if you only have one friend and a bent for self-deprecating humour...
Jun
30
comment What's the point of omitting the “e”, as in “sceptered” going to “scepter'd”, in English poetry?
And as late as the mid-Nineteenth Century, dropping the "e" would have been considered a little déclassé in "proper" society. English has always been going to the dogs.
Jun
30
comment Why aren't double quotes always closed?
Even in a typescript created on a manual typewriter, a change in the left margin (or begin and end block indications, if indicated in the style manual for a publication) would be correct. Even newspapers will use a call-out box in their narrow columns. Doing things otherwise is ignoring the convention for block quotations -- that doesn't make the dialog quotation style correct.
Jun
30
comment Why aren't double quotes always closed?
In a typeset document, extended quotations from another written source would normally be set as a block quotation without quotation marks.
Jun
30
comment A or an XML report?
+1 - Even if the reader expands the abbreviation to "Extensible Markup Language", it would still take "an". With some abbreviations, you'd need to consider what's being abbreviated and whether the abbreviation is normally pronounced in its abbreviated form or in its expanded form; with XML it works out the same both ways.