RE: Deprecated - is it a word?

Subject: RE: Deprecated - is it a word?
From: mlist -at- safenet-inc -dot- com
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Thu, 2 Mar 2006 10:56:46 -0500

Jones, Donna [mailto:DJones -at- zebra -dot- com] admitted:
> Not in my circles. I can't say that I've ever heard that word
> before. My
> first thought was that it was a typo for "depreciated." Then
> the phrase
> "self-deprecating behavior" came to mind. That means picking on
> yourself, right? So by the same token, a deprecated feature
> must be one
> that you're picking on? In a roundabout way, that may be
> correct, but I
> doubt it's what John means.
> John, depending on your audience, you might want to pick a different
> word. If your users are in an industry where the word is commonplace,
> they may understand what you mean. However, I doubt that the average
> person on a U.S. street would know what the word means. If the feature
> is being removed, phased out, or whatever, use the simpler word/phrase
> to get through to more people.

If we all subscribe to the principle:
"Never use a word that your audience might not have already learned."
then we enter a death spiral.
The words that we _can_ use become fewer and fewer.

If it's really an issue, just define it as you mean it in your doc.
That used to be what glossaries were for.

As for "deprecated" I'm in Canada and I've used it.

When I use it, I'm generally referring to a command or option or
argument (where argument means an item of a recognized type and
format that is provided as input during the statement of a command...
not two people enjoying a loud disagreement...) that is still
available for use, by those who might have used it in previous
versions, but which is in the process of being discontinued, and
for which we recommend that you arrange to begin using the
term/command/option/argument before the deprecated one is
removed in a near-future release. (Ok, breathe.)

In other words, "deprecated" means: we're discontinuing
this, but we're allowing a couple of releases for you
to get used to the idea and make alternate arrangements
in smooth and orderly fashion.

No big deal.
The first time I encountered it, I gathered the general
idea from context. I don't think I'm that much smarter
than my customers... well, not in a public mailing list
I don't.... ahem! kaff-kaff! Harrumph!


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