91

When contrasting with "necessity", Doug's option is a typical contrast. Maintenance shouldn't be an option, but an all-important necessity. Another contrast tends to be luxury. Maintenance shouldn't be a luxury, but an all-important necessity.


76

I would argue that the 'State of the Union' is an address to the nation, and therefore the plural of State of the Union Address is 'State of the Union Addresses' since "State of the Union" is modifying the word Address.


57

Bonus carries the non-essential nature of what you're after. Maybe "bonus feature", or "added bonus".


47

Surprisingly, some dictionaries such as Collins and Dictionary.com do list sightsee as a verb, with sightsaw as the past form. On the other hand, I have never heard anybody actually say it. I have heard plenty of people say went sightseeing. A quick trip to Ngram to compare the usage of sightsaw against went sightseeing comes up with plenty of instances of ...


45

nicety [nahy-si-tee] –dictionary.com Usually, niceties. a refined, elegant, or choice feature, as of manner or living: working hard to acquire the niceties of life. Maintenance is not a nicety, it's an all-important necessity.


43

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, as quoted by the site below, you hyphenate if the compound adjective is before the noun and don't hyphenate if it is after the noun. With compound adjectives formed from the adverb well and a participle (e.g., well-known), or from a phrase (e.g., up-to-date), you should use a hyphen (or hyphens) when the ...


35

I like the spelling convention set in GCC Coding Convention: "front end" (noun) "front-end" (adjective)


30

This is complicated, because "State-of-the-Union" is being used as a noun when it isn't really one. If "State-of-the" was being used to describe a Union, then Union would be pluralised to Unions If "of-the-Union" was being used to describe a State, then State would be pluralised to States. But "State-of-the-Union" is an abbreviation of "State-of-the-Union ...


30

"State-of-the-unions" is entirely appropriate in informal spoken English. The context you give is quoted speech, so I would say it is fine. In fact, the utterance would have less force if any other option were chosen.


27

Forward slashes have been around forever (well, at least since Ancient Rome), but they were just called "slash". Backslashes, on the other hand, are a fairly recent invention. How ASCII Got its Backslash reports that it was added to the ASCII character set in 1961 for the Algol programming language. The term rose in popularity in the early 80's, probably ...


23

"Home page" was used first, but "homepage" followed soon after, is also acceptable and I prefer. Homepage was used to refer to the main page of a website as early as July 1993. Home page was used to refer to the main page of a website as early as September 1992. The first web browser was only written (by Tim Berners-Lee) in 1990-1991. Home page was used ...


23

The construction 'something up' is informal American usage, typically when encouraging, exhorting, or castigating someone. Originally seen in "man up" or "cowboy up" (Free Dictionary), respectively meaning: to adopt a sufficiently resolute approach or course of action to adopt a tough approach or course of action If I say to someone: ...


22

Great question! Save for the oral echo, there's no necessary relationship between gerontology and ontology. The t comes from the genitive case. Here is the Ancient Greek Wiktionary entry for γέρων (geron). Note that, unlike English, Greek has several noun cases, including the genitive γέροντος (gerontos), the dative γέροντῐ (geronti), and the accusative ...


21

The stem of the Greek noun erôs "love, desire" is normally erôt-, not er-. So it should be erotogenic or erotogenous in English. Cf. phôs, phôt- "light", as in photograph, not *phograph; erotic, not *eric. That said, there are forms in Greek that use erô- and era- as stems, like the verb eraô/erô, "I love". It's just that er(a)- is the ultimate root of all ...


21

You're looking for "States of the Union". "State of the Unions" would imply that Trump is giving one speech about many different Unions. This rule also applies for mother-in-law (=> mothers-in-law) and commander in chief (=> commanders in chief). It's explained here: Words that are pluralized in the middle?


20

Maintenance shouldn't be an extra. extra n. an additional feature. {R H K Webster's} extra n Something more than is usual or necessary {AHDEL; same link}


20

It is a "fish and chip" shop, but you order "fish and chips". Or just a chip shop since they always sell fish too. In general, a shop selling a product refers to its product as a collective noun in the singular. Chip shop — sells chips. Cake shop — sells cakes. Curtain shop — sells curtains.


18

Roll back is a standard phrasal verb. Roll is the verb part, and back is the particle. Rollback (stress on first syllable) is an event nominalization from roll back (stress on second). As a phrasal verb, roll back participates in the usual alternation with direct objects: Roll the carpet/budget back. (Vb + Noun DO + Particle -- OK) Roll back the carpet/...


17

While I would say the third of your options, "non-defect-source-assesment processes", is most correct, I would strongly suggest trying to rephrase the subject for clarity. The hyphens can be used to indicate at what level the negation applies, so in this case "defect source assessment" is being negated, but "processes" is not. This is appropriate because you ...


17

I think the word "option" fits nicely in place of "nice-to-have". This sense of "option" is defined by Merriam-Webster as "an item that is offered in addition to or in place of standard equipment".


16

One suggestion would be buttercup, which is neither butter (though it is yellow) nor a cup (though I suppose the flower is vaguely cup-shaped).


16

Awhile is an adverb: Bear with me awhile. A while is the use of the noun "while": We've been here for a while. So in your example you can use either: I've been wondering this awhile. Or: I been wondering for a while.


14

This is a technical term, used in discussing computer data storage. Both forms, filepath and file path, are used, but which one is used is often dependent on context. While I can’t find any specific reference for usage in context, my experience has been that filepath, as an unhyphenated compound word, is generally used when discussing it as an entity (...


13

Home page vs homepage falls into the same category as website and Web site as well as motor home and motorhome. Originally, the words homepage, website, and motorhome did not exist, but after so much usage over the years it has become acceptable to combine the two words into one. In other words, either way is fine.


13

The key here lies in the fact that "state of the union" isn't just a phrase, it's a title - State of the Union - which is understood to be the name of a speech. If we have multiple of those things, we don't want to pluralise the states, nor to we want to pluralise the unions: we want to pluralise the entire title - State of the Unions. The fact that this ...


12

We never say, I want an iced cream, or cream with ice, or cream which is iced, or anything else. We just say, I want ice cream. My point is when something is un-modifiable, that means it exists as a single unit. It may appear to have two words, but those two words, spoken separately, would have different meanings, so that particular word needs to be spoken ...


11

The line between endocentric and exocentric compounds is not always clear. For example, word meanings change. Today, a footprint is neither a foot nor a print, but print referred originally to any kind of mark or stamp, and thus footprint would have been endocentric. In other cases, the component retains its meaning as a standalone word, but it is ...


11

Mushroom was a word which I loved as a small child, there is no room in mush 1 A type of mushroom is a toadstool, which is neither a frog nor a type of chair or poo (stool) And there is the silly old pun which still raises a smile. Q: Why did the Mushroom get invited to all the parties? A: Because he's a fungi! (fun guy) Q: Why did the fungi leave the ...


11

Feedback, as you acknowledge, is not a countable noun. Therefore, to indicate plurality it is necessary to attach it to something that does have a plural form. Feedback from 14 sources (or respondents, participants, etc. Fourteen feedback messages Fourteen instances of feedback I do see some indications online (blogposts and the like) that feedback may be ...


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