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> What is the purpose of your document? To entertain or to instruct? I
> think that the overuse of a thesaurus (in a technical document) will
> confuse the reader. Use simple and concise language. Using the same
> terms over and over again to express the same thing avoids confusion.
> I think EXPENSIVE is stretching it in that instance!
Depends upon your audience. Programmers have a tendency to
stretch the language, use metaphors, anthropomorphosize, and generally
break the rules. "Expensive" is a rather mild case. I've often heard
programmers describe a program as "CPU-hungry" or "memory-hungry" or
even as a "CPU hog", indicating it not only likes a lot of CPU, it
will take it and hold onto it!
To change "expensive" or not? It's a figure of speech.
Decide on your audience - for other programmers in an informal forum,
then I'd just leave it that way. For a more formal situation where
I'm still talking to programmers, I'd make the phrase a little clearer,
indicating what the cost is in - memory, cpu, storage space, runtime -
"Expensive in terms of storage space."
For non-programmers, I'd definitely change it to "uses a lot
of computer resources". Note, however, that this isn't completely
accurate. "Expensive" indicates a relative cost - the programmer may
be referring to the program as CPU or memory "expensive" in comparison
to other standard UNIX workstation applications, or may be referring
to a compression algorithm as "expensive" in CPU compared to most
other compression algorithms. If utter clarity is important for your
target audience, it's time for some followup interviewing.