Re: Grammar: "Multiply by" or "Multiply times"?

Subject: Re: Grammar: "Multiply by" or "Multiply times"?
From: "Elisa R. Sawyer" <elisawyer -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "Wright, Lynne" <Lynne -dot- Wright -at- kronos -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 26 Apr 2017 13:27:53 -0700

Lauren is correct. In this case, I would go back to the SME and make
certain that I had the correct context. From the wording, it* might or
might not* be a matter of 3 X 2 being the same as 2 X 3.

The context for the absorbance of the dilution is important here. There are
several ways that absorbance of a dilution might be measured in a
laboratory setting.

Probably the lab technicians are using a spectrophotometer for which some
setup has been specified prior to this step in the instructions. If so, the
absorbance is directly proportional to molarity, the technician can take
the value and from it get a value that is useful in calculating exact
quantities of reactants to use in obtaining a desired compound at the end
of the entire procedure.

The above is the likely scenario, but the phrase absorbance of dilution
might be used in other settings and scenarios, as with isotope dilution or
dilution chromatography.

Even in the most likely scenario, adding an example is a best practice and
increases comfort in the new user of the document because they have a
checkpoint. I suggest that you find out what a typical or realistic value
for the absorbance of a dilution is and then use that value in a simple
equation.

-Elisa

On Tue, Apr 25, 2017 at 1:23 PM, Wright, Lynne <Lynne -dot- Wright -at- kronos -dot- com>
wrote:

> I have to disagree: 3 x 2 is the same as 2 x 3; and both are the same as 3
> x 1 x 2.
>
> The order of the digits doesn't matter. The result is still 6.
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: techwr-l-bounces+lynne -dot- wright=kronos -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com [mailto:
> techwr-l-bounces+lynne -dot- wright=kronos -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf Of
> Lauren
> Sent: April-25-17 4:10 PM
> To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> Subject: Re: Grammar: "Multiply by" or "Multiply times"?
>
> On 4/25/2017 9:36 AM, Robert Lauriston wrote:
> > You can say "three times two is six" or "three multiplied by two is
> > six," but you shouldn't have "multiply" and "times" in the same
> > sentence.
>
> This is correct and wrong at the same time. "Three times two is (equals)
> six" is not ""three multiplied by two is six." "Three times two equals six"
> is stated as two multiplied by three equals six." The order is important,
> while the mathematical result is the same. "Times" is a count of how many
> times an ingredient or process is used. "Multiplied by" what is used to
> increase the ingredient or process.
>
> So for 3 x 2 = 6, if "times" is used, then 2 is the thing being increased
> and the phrase is "three times two." If "multiplied by" is used then the
> meaning is that you have three of something that you are increasing by two.
>
> The phrase being addressed is, "multiply the absorbance of the dilution
> times 20." Accuracy of the order of things is important here. What it
> sounds like the scientist is saying is either, "multiply the absorbance of
> the dilution 20 times," or "multiply the absorbance of the dilution by 20."
> The meaning of the two interpretations can differ whether the formula
> represents a process or a factor. Context is necessary.
>
>
>
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--
Elisa Rood Sawyer
~~~~~^~~~~~
Technical and Creative Writer
"Apparently there is nothing that cannot happen today." Mark Twain
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Follow-Ups:

References:
Grammar: "Multiply by" or "Multiply times"?: From: Emoto
Re: Grammar: "Multiply by" or "Multiply times"?: From: Lauren
RE: Grammar: "Multiply by" or "Multiply times"?: From: Wright, Lynne

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