Re: appears vs is displayed

Subject: Re: appears vs is displayed
From: Jim Purcell <jimpur -at- MICROSOFT -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 1997 09:59:49 -0800

Chris Thiessen offers:

>Fully cognizant of the transitive verb/lack of predicate
nominative aspects, we
> >also use "displays" in our documentation, some of which just won
> substantial awards
> >(Merit and Distinguished) at the STC's international level in both
> hardcopy and
> >online categories. Our customers seem like it, as well.
>
> As an STC judge, I can tell you that minor solecisms do not affect my
> evaluation of a document unless those solecisms are pervasive. The
> same is true, in my experience, of customers. The odd missing object
> is not a problem if the manual is clear throughout. This is not to say
> that Chris's customers like this misuse of "display," only that those
> who notice it are willing to forgive minor transgressions if the
> manual has greater virtues.
>
> FWIW, I use "appears" in these constructions, but I don't object to
> "is displayed," passive or no. I prefer "appears," though, because I
> don't want to imply that the user's goal is to display a dialog box.
> The dialog box appears only so the user can do something else. I want
> to keep the focus on that something else, so the less said of the
> dialog box as a screen entity, the better.
>
> Jim Purcell
> jimpur -at- microsoft -dot- com
> My opinions, not Microsoft's
>
>

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