Re: Basic Voice ??s: OK for Software to "allow", "let", "enable", "provide" and so forth?

Subject: Re: Basic Voice ??s: OK for Software to "allow", "let", "enable", "provide" and so forth?
From: AmyD -at- osas -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 2003 07:40:00 -0700

Pete's conundrum:
> It seems that every descriptive sentence I write goes something like
> this:
> The software "enables" you to
> The software has functionality that "lets" you=20
> Screen XXX "provides"
> Every time I write one of those sentences, I feel like going out in the
> parking lot and banging my head against a lightpost. <snip!>

I've ran into this problem too - especially in basic function descriptions
(you know, that explanatory paragraph before you launch into the
procedure). My compromise has been to use wording such as "Use the
flibbertygibbet to manage your calendar, add contants, and flibbert
gibbets." Otherwise, when I have to, I choose either "lets you" or "helps
you" over "enables you to" or "allows you to." These latter choices
require an infinitive verb whereas the former don't, helping me reduce
some wordiness.

Geoff's also made some other excellent points - perhaps it's possible to
write around the problem.

Good luck!
Amy Dohlman


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