Author Topic: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.  (Read 66557 times)

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Circlotron

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Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« on: September 05, 2020, 01:38:33 pm »
Here we have a headline that reads:
Black hole 142 times heavier than the Sun discovered
and further along in the article we read
GW190521 weighs in at 142 times the mass of our Sun

https://alkhaleejtoday.co/international/5038560/Black-hole-142-times-heavier-than-the-Sun-discovered.html

Which is of course, plainly contradictory.
If it were 142 times heavier than our sun it would be 143 times the mass of our sun, not 142. This kind of thing seems to be popping up more and more lately.

What other things are there?

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JackJones

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2020, 01:47:56 pm »
People saying MOSFET and a transistor. What do they think the T stands for? grumble grumble

I hear a lot of people saying that, they think BJTs are transistors and FETs something else.

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Circlotron

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2020, 02:22:00 pm »
And back in the 1960s the general public would often call a portable radio a transistor.

GlennSprigg

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2020, 02:30:22 pm »
I KNOW how it works, but I HATE it when we refer to past dates, like the 17th Century!!
I prefer the likes of the 1600's to define a date !!!
Diagonal of 1x1 square = Root-2. Ok.
Diagonal of 1x1x1 cube = Root-3 !!!  Beautiful !!

HobGoblyn

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2020, 03:56:08 pm »
The saying used by many UK retailers "when it's gone, it's gone"

free_electron

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2020, 04:02:39 pm »
People saying MOSFET and a transistor. What do they think the T stands for? grumble grumble

I hear a lot of people saying that, they think BJTs are transistors and FETs something else.
pin numbers and atm machines >
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Siwastaja

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2020, 04:07:31 pm »
If it were 142 times heavier than our sun it would be 143 times the mass of our sun, not 142. This kind of thing seems to be popping up more and more lately.

NOOOoooooooooooooo!

My pet peeve are people who say that.

Years ago, I found a very detailed and nice article going hundreds of years back in records to prove you totally wrong. Although, that was regarding Finnish language where the exact same stupid discussion has been seen over and over again (popping up more and more lately!). The construct, and argumentation are exactly the same. So I don't know if you are actually wrong in English. But I'm 99% sure you are. And I'm sure it goes back for much longer than in Finnish. After all, correctness of language is not defined by some arbitrarily chosen pedantic (on surface) logic (defined by YOU in this case), but by actual usage, and the actual usage of "x times heavier" goes back for the long time.

This is easy, just laborious to research. Just get as much material as possible from as long period of time as possible, find usages of the "x times heavier" pattern, pick those where the meaning can be inferred from the context or otherwise (for example, both numbers are well known or verifiable from other sources), and see which was the intended meaning. Let me guess: it will be 100% of the "x times heavier" = "x times as heavy" meaning, the other, your "correct one", "x times heavier" = "x+1 times as heavy" only seen in meta-discussions like this.

If you want to be extra careful, you avoid the whole "x times heavier" construct just to avoid one of the nitpickers "misunderstanding" on purpose; this is what I try to do, preferring exactness whenever it's possible.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2020, 04:18:44 pm by Siwastaja »

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free_electron

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2020, 04:11:30 pm »
a few of mine

- bootup / time from disc-in to movie start times of blu-ray and dvd players. i have an old ( made in october 2000 ) daewoo dvd player with a hard mechanical on/off switch. click the switch and within a second the menu is ready. pop in a disc and within another second or two the disc menu appears. Try that with a modern player. they sit there chewing and chewing on the disc and then frequently come up with 'this disc needs a firmware update in order to play'. you want a quiet comfy movie night and the whole experience is ruined because you can spend half an hour installing four or five firmware updates to these fuckers. i stopped buying discs yeara ago. i'm tired of that nonsense.

- ANY programming language that requires semicolons to denote end of statements. there is a cr or cr/lf pair in the file already. use that. and , in case a line really is too long you should either : rewrite the code , or have a line continuation character. there are much less cases where you need to split a long line.
- Any programming language that makes a difference between uppercase and lowercase for statements and variable names.
- Any programming language using whitespace for flow control
- Any programming language that cannot understand when = means 'assign' and when it means 'compare'. This problem was solved in the 60's. And we are still fucking around with things like := and == because the parsers writers are stupid.
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joseph nicholas

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2020, 04:15:45 pm »
People who believe that Bible stories actually happened.

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Siwastaja

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2020, 04:16:59 pm »
- ANY programming language that requires semicolons to denote end of statements. there is a cr or cr/lf pair in the file already. use that. and , in case a line really is too long you should either : rewrite the code , or have a line continuation character. there are much less cases where you need to split a long line.
- Any programming language using whitespace for flow control

These two are conflicting. Which one do you want? I agree with the latter, and for that exact reason, disagree with the first.

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mark03

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2020, 04:21:35 pm »
Ha... these are kind of cute (although the example cited by the OP is, in fact, correct).  How about something genuinely annoying:

People who fail to reach cruising speed before merging onto the freeway (or equivalent in your country), and people who drop below cruising speed before having fully exited the freeway.

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Siwastaja

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2020, 04:29:02 pm »
People who fail to reach cruising speed before merging onto the freeway (or equivalent in your country), and people who drop below cruising speed before having fully exited the freeway.

Oh, traffic!

People who drive their toy SUVs (mostly white Kia, for some strange reason! I have no opinion about this brand except this real-life observation) 85km/h in perfectly optimum conditions, when the limit is 100km/h (and would be 110km/h in most European countries in similar conditions/roads), right next to the center line, even on the top of the center line wearing off the line, making it much more difficult to take over. If there is a (limited-length) passing lane, they will immediately speed up to 105km/h overspeed to prevent law-abiding citizens taking over (so most in the long jam caused by them), then slow back to 85 km/h. They fail to see what they do is actual criminal offence on at least two or three different counts. You often need some serious speeding to get past the jams they produce. Or, you just finally fall asleep in the jam. They think they are good drivers, yet they have 5-second reaction times and cause most of the accidents (not counting alcohol related), while people driving normally pay most of the fines by driving 87 km/h - 200€ a pop - or oh my god, 105km/h - easily 10000€/pop - on a 100-80-100-80-100-80-100-80 camera trap road that would be solid 110km/h in almost any other European country.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2020, 04:46:48 pm by Siwastaja »

Siwastaja

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2020, 04:38:13 pm »
And back in the 1960s the general public would often call a portable radio a transistor.

This is a good example case of one of the pet peeves of mine, shortening multi-word concepts that consist of attribute + base term, to the attribute only. This makes for great obfuscated professional jargon. The key is, shortening it to the base term only is correct, but loses information. Shortening it to the attribute only, provides a hilariously ridiculous and totally wrong word, but if the receiving part can guess the base term, then the information is preserved: great compression ratio.

This also works if the users of the words do not know what the attribute means, and would only use it in this single phrase. Then, the base term becomes redundant for them. This is the case for "transistor radio".

A ridiculous example would be "bus stop". Would you call it a "bus"?

Regarding the traffic theme, police here call drivers under influence of alcohol... drumroll: "steering wheels". Example usage: "We caught a steering wheel." Because it's literally, and semi-officially called "wheel-drunkenness". Remove the base term, drunkenness, leave the attribute, the steering wheel. That's it!
« Last Edit: September 05, 2020, 04:40:37 pm by Siwastaja »

Tomorokoshi

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2020, 04:49:38 pm »
And back in the 1960s the general public would often call a portable radio a transistor.

This is very common. A key point here is "general public"; inherent in that description is they would not have a need to know or understand the vagaries of electronic components. Consider that people going to the beach or whatever would be unlikely to bring any other kind of transistorized device, so in that case "transistor" would imply that the device in question is a radio.

For a long time in America televisions were generally known as "tubes", even though it was understood that "tubes" were also the functional components within the device.

SpecialK

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2020, 04:58:11 pm »
Using the term "hydro" to mean "electricity".  Some of our electricity is hydro-electric.  Much of it isn't.  It's throwing out the significant term and keeping the insignifcant detail.  It's like calling a pneumatic tire automobile a "pneumo" or something.

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Tomorokoshi

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #15 on: September 05, 2020, 04:59:34 pm »

I have a couple disagreements with what is asserted by grammarian or scientist pedants:

1. I use the phrase, "this data is..." as opposed to "these data are...". From my point of view, the data set is a unitary collection; therefore it is a single item. Even if the data set were multiple, independent items, the conclusion would still be based on the unified collection of the data sets. Alternatively, if some amount of the data were removed, the implication is the conclusion would also be different.

2. The location of the period within a quotation. I move it to the outside of the quote. For instance:
And then he said, "My transistor is broken".

as opposed to:
And then he said, "My transistor is broken."

which would imply:
And then he said, "My transistor is broken.".

Bud

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #16 on: September 05, 2020, 05:23:33 pm »
Any kickstarter that claims "Our product will revolutionize the industry !"
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ebastler

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #17 on: September 05, 2020, 05:56:31 pm »
- ANY programming language that requires semicolons to denote end of statements. there is a cr or cr/lf pair in the file already. use that. and , in case a line really is too long you should either : rewrite the code , or have a line continuation character. there are much less cases where you need to split a long line.
- Any programming language using whitespace for flow control

These two are conflicting. Which one do you want?

He wants BASIC.
(And has not realized that carriage return is a white-space character.)

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joseph nicholas

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2020, 06:06:50 pm »
People who put the em fa sis on the wrong syll a ble.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2020, 06:10:09 pm by joseph nicholas »

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floobydust

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #19 on: September 05, 2020, 06:27:42 pm »
The dork "Fetlington" label used for a 2N7000 MOSFET. Actually a JFET+BJT is a compound-Darlington for that label.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2020, 06:29:39 pm by floobydust »

magic

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #20 on: September 05, 2020, 07:22:14 pm »
If it were 142 times heavier than our sun it would be 143 times the mass of our sun, not 142.

I guess one could prove it by induction by starting from "one time heavier", but FFS
I have never heard anyone saying it that way.

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TimFox

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #21 on: September 05, 2020, 07:24:37 pm »
My pet peeve is treating "data" as singular.  A "data set" is singular, and "datum" (a member of that set) is singular, but put a few together and you have "data", which is plural.

schmitt trigger

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #22 on: September 05, 2020, 07:44:11 pm »
The verb: to Google

Such as: "Google the Battle of Kursk". Rather than: "Search the web for the Battle of Kursk".

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Circlotron

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #23 on: September 05, 2020, 10:49:27 pm »
“Fully imported”
= better than local people could produce.

“Export quality”
= better than local people deserve.

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eti

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Re: Your pet peeve, technical or otherwise.
« Reply #24 on: September 06, 2020, 01:05:31 am »
This is the internet, when you ask for "advice"

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Smf