Re[2]: Punctuation names (...catch that peeve!)

Subject: Re[2]: Punctuation names (...catch that peeve!)
From: "Arlen P. Walker" <Arlen -dot- P -dot- Walker -at- JCI -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 22 Nov 1994 09:30:00 -0500

"Curly braces?" Aaaarrrrrrrrgh.

No baby talk. Your "favorites" are not important. Use the

Do you take the same attitude towards your audience? A substantial portion of
them may honestly believe "[]" are braces, while an equal portion may be sure
they're brackets. The addition of "Curly" and "Square" helps remove the
perceived ambiguity.

In a science piece I wrote decades ago, I made a passing reference the period of
the revolution of the earth, referring to the trip it makes around the sun. One
of my first readers wasn't clear on whether the event I was referring to lasted
24 hours or 365 days. My first impulse was to pull out the dictionary and show
him the difference between "revolve" and "rotate." I was wrong. Yes, words have
specific meanings. But the purpose of the words are to communicate, and if the
audience isn't clear about the meaning of the words you employ, you're wasting
their time and yours. If a little "baby talk" (BTW, I find that phrase, when
applied to this particular case, to be offensive and elitist) makes the meaning
clear, by all means use it.

Have fun,

Arlen -dot- P -dot- Walker -at- JCI -dot- Com
In God we trust; all others must provide data.

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