Importance Of Language And Its Effect On Research

I’m not a native English speaker, as a result, I’m more sensitive to the author’s use of words when reading, by sensitive I mean, I’m more prone to misunderstand it, this was especially true at the beginning of my career. Sometimes when I read, I would ask myself why would the author even needed to use such a word, or why particular concept in some language has to be named as such, but I now realize that language and how authors and creators of a technology use them, is so important and can effect the ease of research and communication in that field.

For example C# and JavaScript both have the concept of passing an anonymous function to another function, and both use the same syntax:

C#:

var customer = collection.Where(c => c.Id == 2);

Javascript:

var customer = collection.filter(c => c.Id == 2);

I know the inner workings of these are different, but in C# we call what we pass to Where method a “Lambda” and in JavaScript we call them “Arrow Function”, Imagine when they introduced this concept in JavaScript they named it lambda like C#, now anybody who is going to search about this would see the result for C# lambdas or other languages that have this concept with the same name, or should prefix its search term with “JavaScript”, but now because the word we use for it in JavaScript is different, we type “arrow function” and the first thing we see is a site that explains the JavaScript arrow functions.

My point is that the way we use language, and more importantly the companies who choose a word to describe their products, is going to affect the availability of information about that product or technology, and that’s why they call this kind of words jargon or parlance of that field, some of them even go further than this and use an entire different language to describe their concepts, like disease in medical profession for example, you might say daaaa! this is so obvious, but you can’t believe how many times I’ve heard people saying, why they choose this word, it could be simpler, they are pretentious, but in fact in my opinion it’s a good thing, and distinguishing a word used in one field from another is necessary.

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Hamid Mosalla

Hi, I'm Hamid Mosalla, I'm a software developer, indie cinema fan and a classical music aficionado. Here I write about my experiences mostly related to web development and .Net.