View Full Version : Naming a function
06-10-2003, 12:52 AM
Actually, it's sort of like a programming language statement that I want to name. It's not the kind of problem that working at will solve. This might seem trivial, but if you have nothing better to do, read on.
I had a statement called "differentiate text" which altered duplicates of a list of links by adding the title of the target page and a number indicating the link's order (such as "2 of 4"). Then I decided to categorize the various statements. In an effort to have a simmilar number of statements per category, I contrived a system in which statements are categorized by the terms in their name... well, to make a long story short, the word "differentiate" would kind of apply to the non-duplicate links as well as the duplicates once the duplicates have been altered, which would violate category rules. I changed "differentiate text" to "identify text", but I'm still not satisfied.
Basically, my question is--which term is best for indicating the addition of titles and numbers to duplicate links--"notate duplicates" or "annotate duplicates"? Notate seems to deal more with special symbols or abbreviations, and annotate deals more with discriptions. The titles and numbers seem to fall somewhere in between. Which term would you choose?
Notation... For now, I'm going with notate.
06-10-2003, 06:33 PM
"Tag duplicates" might be more of a programmer's way to describe it -- although that sort of implies that you're going to do something with the dupes, like remove them from the list. You're really adding new information...
(An)notate comes close, but doesn't cover the "differentiate" aspect. Maybe "characterize (http://www.bartleby.com/62/84/C0238400.html)"?
06-10-2003, 07:42 PM
Characterize's second definition is "To make noticeable or different.", so I'd have the same problem that I had with "differentiate text" and "identify text." Kind of applies to the non-added-to links as well, but it does come a bit closer to what I want. "Mark" might work, but "notate" might be a bit better since it implies more information, and then I'd have to consider annotate again. I don't know. I'm still going with notate for now.
06-10-2003, 08:11 PM
I'm not sure I understand your dilemma. If the function is called "differentiate duplicates," then it applies only to duplicates. You seem to be mixing up "differentiate" with "things that are different"; it's not a descriptive term, it's an action taken on individual things -- and not necessarily all things.
What I like about "characterize" is that it covers both the "make noticeable or different" and the "describe" aspects of what you're doing.
But hey, I'm the guy who thought LinkGroupie was a good name for the program. What do I know? ;)
At least Rich managed to describe it in 10 words or less. :P
06-10-2003, 08:33 PM
I'm bound the guidelines for a statement's inclusion in a category, one of which is:
You seem to be mixing up "differentiate" with "things that are different"; it's not a descriptive term, it's an action taken on individual things -- and not necessarily all thingsIt would be an action taken on the duplicates, but it would just as much differentiate dups from non-dups as non-dups from dups, and I'd need for the characteristic (or action that creates one) called "duplicates" to "not apply to all link data out side of the group [duplicates]." Sometimes, it's possible to affect one thing by affecting something else, and you could be differentiating both from each other at the same time. In my case, there would be a greater implication that the notated items are the ones being differentiated, but if there is a more accurate word available, I want to use it.
(Someone better buy this thing!)
06-10-2003, 10:02 PM
one of which is: Now that I see what categories you were talking about, you might as well disregard what I said because I have no clue what any of that means. %)
Maybe it's because I'm seeing this out of context, but is it possible that your instructions are a little too, uh, structured? ;) "Implicit modifications"? "Global conformity"? Footnotes?!
I mean, do your users need to understand the logical underpinnings of the program, or do they just want to do things with it?
06-10-2003, 10:22 PM
I give more simple descriptions under each of the various options, and I'll have configuration tools that automatically configure LinkStructor for common uses. I just wanted to create those category definitions to answer people's questions (or dissuade people from asking) about why such and such is in such and such category, and so I'll remember the rules myself. I might tell people that those category guidelines are technical and non-essential for the end user to know.
06-10-2003, 10:46 PM
Originally posted by Wassercrats:
I just wanted to create those category definitions to answer people's questions (or dissuade people from asking) about why such and such is in such and such category, and so I'll remember the rules myself. If the categories make sense, you shouldn't have to defend your choices. No one's going to say "Phooey!" just because they think you put an option in the wrong section.
I would only worry if the program fails to make sense without all of this background info. The best programs are the ones that don't need a manual. ;)
06-10-2003, 11:13 PM
My Global Conformity category includes options that allow you to add an attribute to every anchor tag, which makes sense, but also includes options like (tentatively called) "absolute targets," which changes only relative targets. Some people might think "absolute targets" belongs in a different category (Explicit Modifications--another name I might change), so I felt I should supply the definitions for anyone who's interested.
I would only worry if the program fails to make sense without all of this background info. The best programs are the ones that don't need a manualI intend for my application to only require a quick read of the bold text on the top of the interface, if that. Even for the most advanced, unique features, understanding how the options are grouped isn't necessary, but since there is a basis for it, I might as well make it available for people to read.
Hey, how come when Terra gives complex explainations, everyone loves it even when they don't understand him, and all I get is grief! :)
06-10-2003, 11:40 PM
Originally posted by Wassercrats:
Hey, how come when Terra gives complex explainations, everyone loves it even when they don't understand him, and all I get is grief! :) Sorry. :o I'll try to be a good boy -- next time I'll wait to see the actual program before I start griping about it. :P
You do have to admit that Terra has a certain natural flair for storytelling. Even if we can't understand a bloody word, it sounds exciting.
06-10-2003, 11:50 PM
You do have to admit that Terra has a certain natural flair for storytelling. Even if we can't understand a bloody word, it sounds excitingOh, so my link-checker, site-mapper web application with dozens of never before seen features isn't exiting enough for you? Maybe I should do something REALLY unique... I know... I'll start a web hosting service! :cool:
(smilies are over used)
06-10-2003, 11:57 PM
06-11-2003, 12:11 AM
The best programs are the ones that don't need a manual.
Agreed! I keep typing that darn grep command over and over and it just looks at me and does nothing and tells me nothing!
Okay okay, so I can use grep and it is a great program. But every single time I use it I have to call up the Man page, and then I remember that I can't understand the Man page, and so I have to do a Google search on "grep examples" to find the basic generic syntax that I need to find a word in all files :)
06-11-2003, 01:13 AM
Get "Mastering Regular Expressions" by Jeffrey Friedl. Really. Really really. :)
Hey, how come when Terra gives complex explainations, everyone loves it even when they don't understand him, and all I get is grief!
Don't take this the wrong way, but if anyone else is having as hard a time understanding what general topic you're talking about, let alone the details of the problem, then there's your answer...
06-11-2003, 01:48 AM
Hopefully, the application I'm building will be easier to understand than the technical stuff I've been discussing here. My current problem is small and not so complicated (it's just a language problem), but the reason it exists is. Unfortunately, this thread has evolved into the complicated stuff.
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