Sometimes I use the word “incompetent” describe someone who is, typically, in over their head and not smart enough to at least know they are in over their head. But a friend recently used the word “inept” to describe such a person.
To me, “inept” refers to someone who is physically incompetent. Like a basketball player that can’t play the game — yet is somehow in the game — is inept in my mind. And someone who is incompetent can be incompetent in many ways, physically and even logically.
So are “inept” and “incompetent” interchangeable synonyms? Or is there more subtlety to their use?