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Old 09-20-2013, 07:56 AM
InfinitePossibility InfinitePossibility is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 631

This is a bit of a favourite subject of mine. I think it is frustrating but realistically as this is an international board where we communicate only in written English, we will be unable to avoid the sorts of 'its just semantics' arguments that crop up so often.

In English, we can't even agree on set meanings for simple words like chips or pants (these mean very different things if you are from the US rather than the UK).

I spend a significant proportion of my life writing in a language that has a set syntax and set meanings for all words written using it. I'm a computer programmer and that's how programming languages work. They need to because computers can't run programs unless they can be translated into 1s and 0s and that can't happen unless the meaning is absolutely clear. Your code has to be grammatically completely correct or the computer can't run it.

Writing like that is very different from writing in a natural language. More difficult and also annoyingly, still prone to misunderstandings and problems.

I kind of like all the discussions around what words mean to different people even if sometimes those discussions go on for so long that I lose the thread of them and stop following them.

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