RE: A little respect for "unvalidated"

Subject: RE: A little respect for "unvalidated"
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: Dan Goldstein <DGoldstein -at- riverainmedical -dot- com>, "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 21 Sep 2009 14:58:00 -0400

Dan Goldstein said:

> Neither nor recognizes "unvalidated" as a
> word. Its meaning is clear enough to me, and certainly
> distinct from the
> suggested "invalidated."
> Wiktionary, bless its little heart, does recognize this useful word.

In our capacity as a rowdy and fractious gang of technical ... er... communicators, what do we recognize as the limits on our English use of prefixes and suffixes, given a base word that we wish to modify?

Do some members of this list regard the list of examples attached to the dictionary entry for "un(-)" to be a complete and exclusive list? Which dictionary is authoritative, then, and why?

FWIW, I have a far more liberal interpretation than that (regarding the list as examples not as a complete and non-extensible prescription), but I'm prepared to be shown to be wrong.

If y'all were talking about, say Hardware Security Modules, and you wanted to talk about the ones that had been validated by NIST as being compliant with the FIPS 140-2 standard, and the HSMs that had NOT been so validated, how would you refer to the have-not-been-validated bunch? "Unvalidated"? "Non-validated"? Other? Why?

It's DEFINITELY not "INvalidated", which has its own specific meaning, as Dan rightly observes.

- Kevin

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A little respect for "unvalidated": From: Dan Goldstein

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