tech word for user interface

Subject: tech word for user interface
From: "Carnall, Jane" <Jane -dot- Carnall -at- compaq -dot- com>
To: "'TECHWR-L'" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 22 Feb 2000 14:21:59 -0000

Hi all,

The SME's for a new product have come up with terminology to describe
various interfaces within the product, based on the positioning of the
interfaces in a diagram (similiar interfaces are grouped together in the

The interfaces at the top are called "northbound", those at the bottom are
called "southbound", and to left and right "eastbound" and "westbound".

Is this a standard way of identifying interfaces? I haven't come across it
before, and it's not particularly common on the Internet: where it is used,
it appears to be mainly Java and CORBA technical documents, not user

Should this terminology migrate to user documentation? I don't find it
particularly intuitive, and it makes it easy to identify the interfaces only
if you are looking at the diagram on which it is based.

Jane Carnall
Technical Writer, Compaq, UK
Unless stated otherwise, these opinions are mine, and mine alone.

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