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Jaxilon
02-10-2012, 12:33 PM
/mini-rant on/

LOL, what's up with people saying they "give 110% to something"? I understand it's a figure of speech but let's get real, the absolute most you have is 100% and that means you don't even eat or sleep or stop for one second. Nobody can give more than 100% and the reality is the most anyone can do is way beneath 100% (we have to sleep for example).

What is silly to me is that all sorts of professionals use this saying. Large companies love it. It is just grossly inaccurate.

For example, "I agree 110%."...what does that even mean, it's obviously not possible? I know I'm being a bit literal but who came up with this silly saying anyhow?

** Sorry if >100% is one of your favorite things to say, I do not mean to offend and I am perhaps overstating it here because I often do ignore it. Plenty of my friends use it as well but to my mind it actually makes it harder to take you seriously **

/mini-rant off/

ravells
02-10-2012, 12:55 PM
I agree with you a 110%, Jax. ;)

As I'm sure you already know hyperbole is a part of English usage and used well it adds to the colour and richness of the language, but when certain phrases become cliches, it's probably better not to use them at all. Along the same lines, we use similes: 'he moved as fast as lightning', metaphors: 'she had a heart of stone' and hypocatastases: 'Angel!' (when describing a person).

I have a feeling that your rant isn't so much about the fact that the English language is littered (and enriched) by figures of speech like these but that you're just sick of people who overuse some figures of speech...at least I hope so!

Hai-Etlik
02-10-2012, 01:03 PM
/mini-rant on/

LOL, what's up with people saying they "give 110% to something"? I understand it's a figure of speech but let's get real, the absolute most you have is 100% and that means you don't even eat or sleep or stop for one second. Nobody can give more than 100% and the reality is the most anyone can do is way beneath 100% (we have to sleep for example).

What is silly to me is that all sorts of professionals use this saying. Large companies love it. It is just grossly inaccurate.

For example, "I agree 110%."...what does that even mean, it's obviously not possible? I know I'm being a bit literal but who came up with this silly saying anyhow?

** Sorry if >100% is one of your favorite things to say, I do not mean to offend and I am perhaps overstating it here because I often do ignore it. Plenty of my friends use it as well but to my mind it actually makes it harder to take you seriously **

/mini-rant off/

Yeah, this bothers me too. In fact the general misunderstanding on percentage notation bothers me. All a percentage is is a way to write rational numbers for people who are scared of non-integers. It's sort of like getting around fear of criticism by using French and calling it "critique".

As for a maximum of less than 100% it depends on what you are treating as 1. If 1 is "peak effort continuously:, then no, we can't work that hard but if it's "maximum possible effort over the period" then by definition, we can give that much effort.

Jaxilon
02-10-2012, 01:06 PM
Precisely ravells and fyi, you made me laugh with your 110% response :)

It's kind of like the papyrus font, it's still a font that I love but it's been used overly much by so many people that when you see it you just sigh because it's what you notice first before you even read the words.

Jaxilon
02-10-2012, 01:20 PM
@Hai-Etlik - that is correct.

Another one of these technically incorrect sayings that I have even seen around here is:

"This software has a steep learning curve". If you ever looked at a graph you would understand that a steep curve means you can learn it very fast whereas a gradual curve would mean it takes forever. For some reason however, "A steep learning curve" today, means a thing is rather hard to master and will take a long time.

It's not a huge deal but let's be honest, it's not an accurate description of what we are trying to convey.

A couple more crazy things that catch in my mind when I hear them:

Irregardless - that one should be just "regardless".
I could care less - should be "I couldn't care less" because if you could care less that means you have a measure of care. Probably the exact opposite of what you mean. I suppose there are times that is exactly what you mean because you are trying to trick someone into thinking you don't really care. :)

Oh well, it's the beauty and the bane of a living language I guess.

Hai-Etlik
02-10-2012, 01:35 PM
@Hai-Etlik - that is correct.

Another one of these technically incorrect sayings that I have even seen around here is:

"This software has a steep learning curve". If you ever looked at a graph you would understand that a steep curve means you can learn it very fast whereas a gradual curve would mean it takes forever. For some reason however, "A steep learning curve" today, means a thing is rather hard to master and will take a long time.

I think what that one means is that it's the amount of learning, over time, not the amount of capability. So a shallow learning curve is one where you don't have to learn much to use it, where a steep learning curve is one where you need to learn a lot just to get started. (Like the tutorial thread I've been writing on GIS)

Maybe it's even learning as a function of capability, rather than of time. In which case the second derivatives are probably negatives of one another for steep and shallow learning curves (in general). Most initially steep curves are going to be bending down, while initially shallow curves are going to be bending up. Both will have positive vertical asymptote eventually where no amount of learning will allow you to exceed the inherent capabilities of the software (It doesn't matter how well you know how to use the GIMP, without some sort of extra plugin or re-writing it, it isn't going to produce music.) but software with an initially steep curve is generally going to be much further along.

Of course Infinitesimal Calculus is another of those things with an initially steep learning curve that bends down and makes lots of things easier.

RobA
02-10-2012, 01:53 PM
I agree with the lot of you!

It literally makes my head explode when I hear things like this!

It also literally drives me crazy when people use literally when they really mean figuratively.

:)

-Rob A>

Robbie
02-10-2012, 02:10 PM
I mean, it really bothers me when people start out a sentence with 'I mean'. I mean, you're only supposed to use 'I mean' when you're alerting the listener that you mean to say something, possibly different, than what you originally said the first time. I mean, come on!

ravells
02-10-2012, 02:20 PM
Irregardless - that one should be just "regardless".
I could care less - should be "I couldn't care less" because if you could care less that means you have a measure of care. Probably the exact opposite of what you mean. I suppose there are times that is exactly what you mean because you are trying to trick someone into thinking you don't really care. :)

These two drive me batty.

Bogie
02-10-2012, 02:50 PM
Whatever! ...... ;) ......... One of my least favorites.

RobA
02-10-2012, 03:17 PM
Also reminded of the song "Close But No Cigar" by "Weird" Al Yankovic:

She was gorgeous, she was charming
Yeah, she was perfect in every way

Except she was always using the word "infer"
When she obviously meant "imply"
And I know some guys would put up with that kind of thing
But frankly, I can't imagine why

-Rob A>

geamon
02-10-2012, 03:26 PM
I hate the wifey for using "But um."

jelie
02-10-2012, 05:13 PM
I live with three women. There is one word that starts a sentence that drives me insane: "Listen!"

It is at that moment that I zone out and do not actually listen. It is also at that moment that I dig myself into a much deeper hole that I initially was in.

Lukc
02-10-2012, 07:49 PM
I hate people who get on forums and start posting when they're drunk, late at night, after getting hom e fromme a partee ...

um. I'm going to stop posting for tonight. :)

rdanhenry
02-10-2012, 10:13 PM
I hate that "less" is constantly misused because people have apparently forgotten the word "fewer".

Korash
02-11-2012, 03:05 PM
Like, you know, this is, like, you know?....Awesome..you know.

I swear that this is something I heard my daughter say over the phone one....can't say when...but I am sure at least once..you know?

Larb
02-11-2012, 03:48 PM
The thing I find most amusing about the 110% one is the gradual inflation of it. I used to just hear the 101% but obviously, that's not enough! Now it's 110 and higher.

Jaxilon
02-11-2012, 04:00 PM
Hehe, anytime someone says "ummmmmmm" during a sentence my mind substitutes "Ummm..don'ttalkwhileI'mthinking...mmmmm". Those are basically word whiskers and It's helpful to have someone bring them to your attention before they become deeply ingrained.

Another thing that is sort of maddening is when someone just stops in mid sentence. I personally have a problem because my brain is running at like 200 miles an hour so when someone does this I automatically fill in the rest with the most outrageous things. It can make for some pretty funny conversations.

On a related note, don't try this with people who don't know you very well, you might get some ugly reactions :)

Robulous
02-11-2012, 04:03 PM
I believe it means, not only do they agree with you 100%, but they'll go so far as to knock of 10% off their IQ, just to prove how much they agree.

Hai-Etlik
02-11-2012, 06:47 PM
I hate that "less" is constantly misused because people have apparently forgotten the word "fewer".

Yes confusing mass and count nouns is one of my pet peeves too.

Hai-Etlik
02-12-2012, 01:18 AM
I just heard another one that particularly bothers me, "everyone isn't" in place of "not everyone is"