Re: Tech Writer seeking definition: Choosing v/s Selecting

Subject: Re: Tech Writer seeking definition: Choosing v/s Selecting
From: Joanna Sheldon <cjs10 -at- CORNELL -dot- EDU>
Date: Wed, 12 Apr 1995 20:01:47 -0400

Stephen writes:

>I'm writing a tutorial and was wondering about the difference between
>choosing and selecting. A co-worker inferred that there is an official
>Microsoft definition of each. Any thoughts?


My thought is that we should be wary of any definitions Microsoft comes up
with. Unless you're specifically trying to teach MS lingo, stick with English.

The Random House Dictionary uses the two words to define each other; i.e.
"choose" in definition no. 1. is "to select....", and "select" in definition
no. 1 is "to choose..." But the dictionary does point out something that
holds up in general usage -- which is that we're more likely to use "choose"
in cases that involve decision, and "select" in cases that involve
discrimination. For example: "She may or may not choose to come"; but "He
selected the white shirt from among those hanging in his closet." Now
"choose" could be used for the second sentence as well as the first, but
"select" could not be used for both, because the action of selecting always
involves discriminating, picking one thing instead of another.

This leads me to use the word "select" when directing a new software user to
a menu item. As in: "Select File>save."

...JS


Joanna Sheldon
Technical Writer, Translator
(French, German, Italian)
cjs10 -at- cornell -dot- edu


Previous by Author: Re: Serif/San Serif Fonts
Next by Author: Re: Me vs. Myself
Previous by Thread: Re: Tech Writer seeking definition: Choosing v/s Selecting
Next by Thread: Re: Tech Writer seeking definition: Choosing v/s Selecting


What this post helpful? Share it with friends and colleagues:

Sponsored Ads


Sponsored Ads