ian's grammactical rules

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peter-f
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by peter-f » Fri May 20, 2005 7:21 am

Dean, Terri, Chris...
I liked many of your points... even those that seem to disagree!<p>My observations:
1. Nothing is as Stupid as someone who does not persue an education (in the U.S., the libraries are generally Free).
2. Nothing is to be hated... save: War, disease and famine.<p>One of my father's observations worthy of note:
Nobody is a "good-for-nothing", because anyone can serve as a bad example!<p>Back to proper English: to communicate... clearly, and without effort on the listener's (or reader's) part one must learn the language. Proper language. As for engineering and bad English combined: Feh!- That's what schematics and equations do... clear up the communication that the English can't handle! (My Dad got many of his circuits from German publications - of course, he also was fluent in German! But the schematics made it easy to SHARE the ideas!)<p>Still, good engineering and good language are a step above... so that will still be sought (except in Microsoft's case... they still import people because they're cheaper that way).<p>My profession is Industrial Design (think: merge architecture, sculpture, and engineering) - and my fellowws find lots of folks who are "visually illiterate," meaning they can't read a blueprint or rendering, or project a sketched idea into a real object. That's actually MOST people. So we get to 'communicate' an idea to a toolmaker... or make a model. Our clients need to translate thier needs- and the weakness in communicating (visually) keeps us busy explaining (and re-explaining) things. <p>As for 'right side/ left side' - I exhibit the distinctions with my colleagues quite often... My wife found that while I am drawing/designing something, she cannot interrupt with conversation until she gets me 'out-of-gear'! Visual and verbal processing interfere with one another... with me, it's a bit extreme.
A professor of mine told me he was late after missing an exit on the highway... having been distracted by the cell phone. So I explained what I found... the 'right side/ left side' conflict is at work there, too! <p>So, I fall precisely in the middle here.
Can't engineer... go away.
Can't speak straight... find Some way to get your ideas across. <p>There will be some genius patient enough to handle the concepts of tomorrow's Tesla... just let the ideas get presented, first.

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jollyrgr
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by jollyrgr » Fri May 20, 2005 9:47 am

I pose a question to the "engineering types" that regard language skills as unnecessary for their profession. Would you consider it okay for an English major to publish a technical document with the same attention to the technical details that you apply to your writing skills? <p>For instance, an English major determines that a seven Ohm resistor has 22 volts across it. And they write that you will measure 3.1428571428 Amps. flowing through it. Further they write that this is a "Pi" resistor network because you measured Pi amps flowing through it. Would you respect their findings and give them a pass because their language structure was sound?
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dr_when
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by dr_when » Fri May 20, 2005 11:44 am

First you go left, right? That leaves you two deal with too choices to. That's all they're is two it when there all they're. OK?<p>2b | !2b
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by Dean Huster » Fri May 20, 2005 3:21 pm

Dean, you cant be serious?<p>Yes, Chris, I'm quite serious!<p>" ...immerse your self in ..." [yourself]
"Most scientist have trouble ..." [scientists]
"...just a few micro seconds ..." [microseconds]
"They use one side uncluttered by the others,..." ["others"? What others?]
"... a esoteric and ..." [an esoteric]
"Id hire a savant ..." [I'd]<p>
"Id [sic] hire a savant over any English teacher." <p>What a sweeping, foolish statement. Most "idiot savants" (what a cruel term) are severely handicapped, physically and/or mentally, but one (or two) "talents" shine, whether it's an ability to play a piano by ear or count scrambled toothpicks. You still wouldn't hire a savant who can play piano by ear to be an accompanist for singers.<p>And no, you wouldn't hire an "English teacher" to work out an engineering design, repair an oscilloscope, build a house or repair your car. Only a fool would do something like that.<p>A BSEE degree in the United States begins with nearly two years of general education courses that apply to all of the science, math and engineering disciplines. English grammer, American literature, psychology, sociology, enough semesters of math to choke a horse, physics, chemistry and music appreciation are typical courses in the general education line-up. There's a reason for that. Prospective employers want engineers who can communicate.<p>Here's a perfect example that illustrates how colleges nationwide screw up everything and is subject that just "flies all over me" whenever it comes up. Your local college has an opening for a calculus teacher or a physics teacher. What do they hire? A Ph.D. in math or physics. What's the problem here? THEY CAN'T TEACH!! Oh, they may know their "stuff", but they can't share it well at all. Your local kindergarten teacher has hundreds of times more teaching skills than the typical Ph.D. Ask around among your college-educated friends and you'll discover that it was the math and science professors who were always making up tests that included problems with the "they'll never get this one" philosophy behind them. College courses should be created with a set of objectives, those objectives should be taught and those objectives should be tested using carefully crafted, valid testing instruments. The majority of the class missed the same four items on the test? You'd better be throwing out those four items, for either the test items were poorly-written, the material was not taught or taught properly or the correct answer was not an option in an objective test item. Prof failed half the class? There's a problem there, and it isn't the class!<p>EVERY college teacher should be required to have at least 18 hours of teacher-education coursework under their belt before they're allowed to have the title of "professor" and/or to have tenure.<p>Dean
Dean Huster, Electronics Curmudgeon
Contributing Editor emeritus, "Q & A", of the former "Poptronics" magazine (formerly "Popular Electronics" and "Electronics Now" magazines).

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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by Deal » Fri May 20, 2005 4:12 pm

I have to agree much with Dean on this one. Engineering and electronics are a forward motion communication sport and schematics in universal symbols are just a start. What follows the initial grunts and hand motions of schematics is explanation ,expansion and dialog. Communication skills, written or verbal, are not only the next step in the magic, but are also the handshake of respect required in all histories and cultures as absolutely necessary.

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Chris Smith
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by Chris Smith » Fri May 20, 2005 5:23 pm

Well Dean, I might be illiterate, but when it comes to words, Im extremely literal, accurate, and to the point, because it matters. <p>A SAVANT is a learned person or eminent scholar.<p>No mention of idiot savant, and no mention of being a English major either? <p>See, I read English well, Understand its words even more, and I suck at spelling and grammar.
So what?<p> And this is “Good Communication Skills”, and Ill leave to typing and spelling to a secretary, she needs a job too. <p>Lets stick with the facts, Im illiterate by definition [10th grade English] and Again I communicate just fine, with plenty in print for engineers. <p>And I understand words better than those claiming to be perfect, in English. I focus on word meanings because just a few of the right words are better than a million made out of hot air. <p>My 10th grade level of English got me this far with no regrets so far, some 35 years later with all the grammatical errors of my laziness, and I read much better than I spell.<p> I spell phonetically and use the spell check because my mind types a string function with out looking at the screen, and with out pausing for my mind to worry about spelling when Im trying to think, create and type. And It works for me. Second time around is completely lost. <p>And guess what, I am a successful engineer and even better than my Indian and Chinese counterparts who still have to learn a little more English later in life to have a easy conversation out side the drawing board or workshop. <p>So no, Your wrong, you don’t have to be good, you merely need to be able to get you works across and do your job right, and reading and comprehending have nothing to do with trying to reproduce spelling and grammar on the fly. <p>I fully understand what I read, I do not remember how to spell all the words back with out mistake, and that makes up a big portion of this country. <p>And not every one writes reports or need to, and not ever one has to “sell” their ideas in English like a salesman. And I visualize blue prints better than I Write because the retentive behavior required to be good in English, I left back in 10th grade knowing I could seriously only take one of them with me in life. They are simply not mutual inside this computer called a brain. Left or right, chose only one. Be good at one or the other, there is no room for the two, for me and many others. And Science for me creates far more than paper will ever do. <p> And I still leave out the apostrophe because they just arent needed, for the most part. <p>And I even Know where I spell bad, and have bad grammar, and this changes nothing except SOME out side opinions that also don’t matter in my life or job.<p> So bottom line, yes learn all you can, but no it is not essential that you be like your English teacher because I have passed the technical exams with a 10th grade C in English just fine.<p> Don’t let them fool you or set you back thinking that if you don’t master the English language like a English teacher, you wont have a future in science, its simply not true. <p>And I still don’t know or care what a pronoun is, and don’t want to find out any more than I want to know what a preposition is and why I must know it? These are esoteric rules made for the retentive people in life, which engineers don’t have to be. <p>And for those who think you must be perfect in all aspects of your life and work, have at it, just don’t pretend that every one is supposed to be like you or that it matters if your not. It doesnt.
And no, this is my level of grammar, and it will slightly improve over time if I care for it to be which is not high on my priority list. And I have many more successes than some of the detractors here. <p>I can be perfect where it matters, and use all my energy and resources doing it right, but English doesnt break just because you make minor mistakes, like it does in engineering. <p>And English, doesn’t have the hands or the brain to create something in science. <p>And yes, I on purposely programed the spell check to leave out some of the apostrophes and you can still read it and understood it just fine. And If your annoyed by my poor English, you got bigger problems than my bad English.<p>[ May 20, 2005: Message edited by: Chris Smith ]</p>

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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by terri » Fri May 20, 2005 8:40 pm

From my previous post:<p>"I have a lot of respect for the knowledge and technical wisdom of some people on this board, despite the fact that I stumble over some of the poor english they use.<p>"But it borders on the ridiculous when some of these folks think that they're pioneering a "New English" by self-righteously using cant instead of can't.<p>"That's not wisdom. That's stubborness."<p>And there you have it.<p>Sorry to sound "personal," Chris --I've been trying to avoid that --but deliberately muddying up your otherwise very valuable contributions is, to me, being just plain stubborn.<p>And that's its own handicap.<p>[ May 20, 2005: Message edited by: terri ]</p>
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Chris Smith
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by Chris Smith » Fri May 20, 2005 8:57 pm

Actually Terri, Freud had you in mind with the A- retentive, or type A behavior,...as in his description of the different groups of people.<p>No its not bad, just dont plan heavily on a future past 50 because the odds for most type A’s isnt as good as the rest of us kicked backed animals, because their spring is wound way too tight. <p>Learn to mellow out, don’t be so hypocritical of others and their spelling because others don’t share you views, and you cant change the world. <p>And always learn to laugh at you self first.<p> Were all fools at one time or another. <p>And remember Type A’s tend to drop dead rather early in life.<p>Cant, can not, can’t,...... are so easy for the rest of us because we don’t focus on whats not important. <p>Our brains are clear FROM the retentive rules. <p>Perhaps you had a crush with Miss Goodspell, your English teacher who was well past your years?<p>And I love to help you grow Ian, Thats what life is all about.<p>[ May 20, 2005: Message edited by: Chris Smith ]</p>

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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by Enzo » Fri May 20, 2005 10:18 pm

CHris, if you are successful, then my hat is off to you, you succeeded in spite of your shortcomings. You didn't succeed BECAUSE of them though, and so why tell others that it isn't important because some folks occasionally overcome the deficit? But I can't possibly imagine why someone would boast of his ignorance. We don't waste time and energy making proper sentences, it is a matter of familiarity eith the language. I don't stop and think "now is it their, there or they're" in the middle of a sentence, it is automatic. In the same way as you would not have to run through the "bad boys rape our..." thing every time you look at a resistor color code. That is automatic the same way.<p>Why would you or anyone brag to the world, "Hey, I don't know this and I don't care."

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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by Enzo » Fri May 20, 2005 10:24 pm

Go ahead and call me ####1 if you like, but as an aside, this is something that bugged me from the first day I came here, and every time I see it.<p>At the top of the thread it says this topic is comprised of pages 1 and 2. That is wrong. The topic comprises pages 1 and 2. Or this topic consists of pages 1 and 2. But never "comprised of." COmprises means includes, so the test of your sentence is substituting includes (or included as appropriate). "This topic is included of..." See what I mean.<p>Chris, I know you won't care, but some of the others might.

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Chris Smith
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by Chris Smith » Sat May 21, 2005 12:04 am

Enzo...... I thank you for bringing up another “retentive” value, the color code. <p>Some great engineers can t remember such things as the color code. <p>They just cant. <p>But we, those who are either dyslexic, brain shifted to the right of left, make the best of engineers.<p> We do it in SPITE of those who tell us it cant be done. <p>I to this day cant remember the color code, or even Ohms law, and use Visual aids every day for this purpose.<p> Almost like a one ounce crutch in a million pound world? <p>It’s a brain thing, a handicap, but like my color blindness, I have found ways to over come it, like english. <p> And the strength comes from the negative people in this world telling you, you must, you cant, or as i call them, yur full of it people. <p>I write these words not for the average person, but for those who are not as fortunate to have both sides of the brain conected, and have become the AVERAGE citizen of little inspire.<p>[ May 21, 2005: Message edited by: Chris Smith ]</p>

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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by terri » Sat May 21, 2005 3:25 am

"don’t be so hypocritical of others"<p>Took me a while to figure out that you probably meant "hypercritical." Maybe. I think.<p>And, boy, do you misunderstand my personality.<p>I think what you're saying about others' personalities is called "projection."<p>Jes' tryin' to help. But I guess you don't need it.<p>Sorry!<p>Me go now.<p>[ May 21, 2005: Message edited by: terri ]</p>
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by Dean Huster » Sat May 21, 2005 1:42 pm

Chris, I'm not trying to say that English is everything. Folks make it in this world just fine without "refinements". If it took a full education to succeed*, T.A. Edison and Bill Gates would be failures. It's** more than obvious that you're a smart, gifted person and I'm making no attempt at all to degrade you in any way. We do all have our faults and most of us are willing to admit them.<p>* It's with the apostrophe means "it is" while without, it's a possessive. It is a common mistake to confuse these two, especially if you were trained to touch type. My mistake with it is always a typo, though I couldn't prove it!<p>**"succeed" and "possess" are two of the many words I have on an index card at my computer that I ALWAYS misspell (that one's there, too). Some words I just can't get through my head.<p>And I find a spelling checker to be an annoying tool. Here's why:<p>
Eye halve a spelling chequer
It came with my pea sea
It plainly marques four my revue
Miss steaks eye kin knot sea. <p>Eye strike a key and type a word
And weight four it two say
Weather eye am wrong oar write
It shows me strait a weigh. <p>As soon as a mist ache is maid
It nose bee fore two long
And eye can put the error rite
Its rarely ever wrong. <p>Eye have run this poem threw it
I am shore your pleased two no
Its letter perfect in it's weigh
My chequer tolled me sew. <p>-- Sauce unknown
<p>
(Terri doesn't see a problem with the poem.) ;)
Poetically, it has awful structure because of faltering meter, if nothing else.<p>
The color code? Most engineers don't know it because they don't use it. If you don't use it, you lose it. For me, the color code is like a second language. I see a color, I see a number, whether it's a resistor, and candy bar wrapper or a car. And because I use it so much, I also have the 24-per-decade standard 5% values memorized, so when someone specifies a 4.5K, 1/4-watt resistor, it immediately sticks out to me like a sore thumb.<p>Memorization is something that a lot of folks say they just can't do. But they have all of their demographic data memorized; they can recite the Pledge of Allegiance and the words to hundreds of popular songs. Can't memorize? Right.<p>You'll also find a large number of EEs who can't solder worth a crap or recognize the mechanical traits of a lot of components. A lot of EEs and MEs don't think much beyond the manufacturing of a product and render the thing expensive to repair because of making high-failure-rate parts (e.g., incandescent lamps) difficult to access. LEDs were developed just because of these folks. Those engineers have those problems because for most of them, those skills are for someone else and electronic components don't go much beyond their schematic symbol and their simulation program.<p>Dean
Dean Huster, Electronics Curmudgeon
Contributing Editor emeritus, "Q & A", of the former "Poptronics" magazine (formerly "Popular Electronics" and "Electronics Now" magazines).

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terri
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by terri » Sat May 21, 2005 3:47 pm

Ummmm.... I don't get it. What's wrong with that poem?<p>It's meter is a little off, but otherwise, its OK.<p>--------------
TERRI (grins, ASIDE to audience) Throughout this discussion, I've been reminded of George Bernard Shaw's spelling of "fish" as "ghoti."<p>gh = "f" as in "rough"
o = "i" as in "women"
ti = "sh" as in "nation"<p>[ May 21, 2005: Message edited by: terri ]</p>
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Re: ian's grammactical rules

Post by Dean Huster » Sat May 21, 2005 7:52 pm

Hey, Terri, I've used "ghoti" on my students for years, but never knew to whom to attribute the thing. Thanks! Just for fun, I think I'll "Google" ghoti.<p>Oh, and Chris ... I doubt that you're illiterate. I know I'm not. I know perfectly well who my parents are and they were married for over 50 years.<p>Dean
Dean Huster, Electronics Curmudgeon
Contributing Editor emeritus, "Q & A", of the former "Poptronics" magazine (formerly "Popular Electronics" and "Electronics Now" magazines).

R.I.P.

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