HELP!!! Initialism advise needed pronto!

Subject: HELP!!! Initialism advise needed pronto!
From: "Elaine R. Firestone" <elaine -at- CALVAL -dot- GSFC -dot- NASA -dot- GOV>
Date: Fri, 27 Sep 1996 12:08:02 -0500

Attention all tech editors/tech writers: (Please forgive the cross-postings
all, but I'm desperate!) I'm working on a document right now that's making
me nuts. A couple of y'all have already had the "pleasure" <please insert
sarcasm> of seeing some of the stuff from this ms. Anyway, I need some
advice on creating (or not creating, as the case may be) some initialisms.
The context of the ms is spectral radiances and center wavelengths in an
ocean color satellite sensor. The problem is with following three phrases:

band-weighted center wavelengths

band-weighted spectral radiances

effective center wavelengths

These phrases are all over the ms; often are in the same paragraph; and
many times are repeated within the some paragraph, with some in the same
sentence (as in a discussion about band-weighted center wavelengths
compared to the band-weighted spectral radiances. I've used the initialism
"ECW" for effective center wavelength, since this was used in a previous ms
in the series of technical reports I edit. The other two are new phrases.
If I leave them as is, i.e., don't use initialisms it (1) takes up a _lot_
of extra space and becomes very repetitious, and (2) looks odd when ECW is
in the same sentence with one of the other phrases. If I use initialisms
for all three of these phrases (i.e., BWCW (or BCW); BWSR (or BSR); and
ECW), I'm afraid it'll look ugly and become unreadable when you have a
number of them in a paragraph. I can't rewrite the sentences, so don't
suggest that. Is the solution to use the 3-letter version of the initialism?

Any suggestions? Please respond to to me directly since I need this info
by Monday and I'm on digest for Techwr-l.

TIA.

Elaine


Elaine R. Firestone
elaine -at- calval -dot- gsfc -dot- nasa -dot- gov
elaine -at- seawifs -dot- gsfc -dot- nasa -dot- gov


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