Re: most annoying word

Subject: Re: most annoying word
From: Stuart Burnfield <sburnf -at- au1 -dot- ibm -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Fri, 3 Mar 2006 09:23:52 +0800

What's wrong with enable? One meaning is "to cause to operate (software
that enables the keyboard)" but another is "to make possible, practical, or
easy". I have no problem with saying, "Select option A to enable users to
edit comments." You're not saying that the user is being switched on or
activated in some way. You're just saying that option A makes it possible
for users to edit comments.

I often use the word "enable" to replace the impertinent "allow", as in
"This feature allows the user to ...".


Doc (or maybe Grumpy; he doesn't sound all that Happy) said:
> Another one that has a long history with techwriters and editors: enable
> As in: This features enables the user to ...
> Sheesh, talk about ambition! The feature may be designed to do
> this thing, but the user is a complete other story.


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