FW: Double Time -Reply

Subject: FW: Double Time -Reply
From: Melissa Lowery <MLOWERY -at- GWM -dot- SC -dot- EDU>
Date: Wed, 28 Aug 1996 11:28:31 -0400


I have worked on documentation for a Payroll system recently. The appropriate term is either
double-time or double time. Doubletime is definitely wrong. I would pick one or the other of the
two options and simply be consistent.

It is frustrating to document a system where the programmers show a cavalier disregard for
proper spelling or spelling consistency. I worked on a Magistrate Court system where the
programmer had been consistent, but consistently wrong in spelling "judgment" -- a word that
was everywhere in this system! When informed that "judgement" though it looks correct is not,
the programmer subtly questioned my intelligence! What would I know, I mean I only have an MA
in English (and most of the coursework for a PhD)! The prgrammer resented having to spend time
correcting the spelling errors in the system but, in the end, I prevailed and our system is at least
consistent in spelling if not function.

The only way I have been able to make programmers understand the importance of good spelling
is to ask them what happens when they misspell a command in a program. The compiler
definitely cares about whether or not syntax and spelling are correct. I simply remind them that
their users care as well. I certainly would question the programming quality of a system that
consistently misspelled key words or contained improper grammar. Call me picky if you want!

(Stepping off my soap box and wiping the froth from my mouth...)

Melissa Lowery
mlowery -at- gww -dot- sc -dot- edu
USC CSD Contractual Services

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