Is there any difference between "processor" and "processer"?

Some spelling dictionaries only have the -or form, and some have both. Is it a US vs UK English thing? Or something else?

More specifically, is a computer algorithm that processes orders better called an OrderProcessor or an OrderProcesser?

  • well that's eerie... guess why I googled "processor vs processer"? I have a class called OrderProcessor – ycomp Aug 28 '17 at 2:55

Use processor. While processer is in the OED, its overall usage is so low that people are likely to see it as an error. As written in this answer, most English agent words user the "-er" suffix, except for those based on Latin words which follow the Latin rules. "Process" ultimately comes from Latin via French.

A Google ngram chart showing processor ending in o r with high usage and processer ending in e r with practically no indication of usage.

  • hmm, I wonder when the CPU was invented ) – ycomp Aug 28 '17 at 2:54
  • @ycomp I'm curious why it suddenly took a downturn in the early 90s. – eyeballfrog Aug 28 '17 at 6:22
  • @eyeballfrog The downturn is relative to all the other words used in English. So, for example, if people started referring to them as CPUs or microprocessors or central processing units or chips or some other synonym, then you'd see such a downturn. Or even if more words were written overall about topics other than computers in relation to the number of words written about computers. The important information in that graph is the size of the gap between processor and processer. – Mr. Shiny and New 安宇 Aug 28 '17 at 13:14

It is rather simple, except that the people over the pond choose to screw around with the English language far too much. I.e. center instead of centre.

Lets take the word 'sailor'. Because there is an 'o' it is referring to a person; whereas 'sailer' refers to an object. I.e. the boat is a good sailer.

By the way the word Metre refers to a measure of length; whilst meter is the correct spelling for measuring equipment i.e. parking meter (time), Ampmeter (current), Ohmmeter (resistance).

  • If you're going to be argumentative, at least be right. American English was a dialect of its own before Johnson decided to align English spellings with their French roots. – Rupert Morrish Nov 20 '18 at 19:35
  • According to this explanation, a "teacher" would be a object, while a person would be called a "teachor". And a "calculator" would have to be a person, while an object would be a "calculater". Not to mention incubator, elevator, inhibitor, ventilator, refrigerator, radiator and driver, rider, leader, sleeper, writer... – herisson Nov 21 '18 at 0:35

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