[e2e] evolution of bandwidth as a term

Cannara cannara at attglobal.net
Thu Oct 2 15:15:29 PDT 2003

Precisely, John.  Furthermore, Sam Clemens (Twain's real, non-marketed 
identifier) also had little good to say about the equivalent of marketing in
those days.  More recently "bandwidth" has been misappropriated to serve
marketing purposes, because it sounded more expert, more sexy (to those
ignorant of scientific purpose) -- in other words, made more $.  So, the
question really boils down to academics buying into being servants of
marketing, or just saying no.  :]

For myself, I continue to fail any student who doesn't learn to distinguish
"bandwidth" from 'bandwidth' and to do so in every oral/written opportunity,
which is my response to the sillyness of: "...how the meaning is currently
communicated".  {:o]


John Day wrote:
> At 12:32 -0700 10/2/03, Loki Jorgenson wrote:
> >As an academic who has worked on the nature of language evolution, I
> >would suggest that it is "natural" for meaning to evolve and for
> >conservative forces to resist that change.  Quoting (I think it was)
> >Twain,
> >    "Change is coming.  It's probably for the better.  I won't like it".
> >
> >There is a cost for "conflating terms" and there is a cost for
> >maintaining the distinction between terms.  And the human organism will
> >optmize language for effectiveness.  Or at least that is how the
> >evolutionary model describes it.
> >
> >Whether right or wrong to "misuse" the word bandwidth by any given value
> >system, it *is* how the meaning is currently communicated.  And, I would
> >guess, how we will likely use the word in the future.  Unless of course
> >conservative forces are able to resist successfully and enforce the
> >codification of conduct and usage.
> >
> >Regardless, I suggest that being judgemental and critical of the
> >individuals on this list is counter-productive to the purpose of its
> >existence.  Joining it should indicate subscription to its objectives, I
> >would think.
> >
> >Agreed?
> NO!
> The Internet nor much else of the modern world could not have been
> built without carefully defining and adhering to the definitions of
> such things as:  bandwidth, mass, joule, kilogram, power, charge,
> bit, watt, etc.  Getting terms right and sticking to them is crucial
> for all scientific pursuits, if not intellectual pursuits.  Although,
> I am aware that certain "disciplines" have made much in the last few
> years about ignoring such things.  But as far as I am concerned they
> can all go Fish!
> Take care,
> John
> And I was greatly embarrassed when the lesser campus of my alma mater
> hired him.  ;-)

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