At 02:16 15/06/2004 +0900, you wrote:
>On Monday 14 June 2004 09:57, Hal Fulton wrote:
>> Sean O'Dell wrote:
>> > I am about to put the word "arbitrary" back into every single
>> > celsoft.com/Battery document I've written if people refuse to respect my
>> > opinion in the matter and continue to berate me over it.  I took it out
>> > initially trying to avoid hurting anyone's feelings, but since it seems
>> > apparent that this discussion is going to go on and on, I feel almost
>> > compelled to hold up the word on a billboard.  I used the word properly,
>> > and I still meant what I said.  I'm starting to feel sorry for taking the
>> > word out of the docs.
>>
>> Relax, this isn't a war.
>>
>> I can see how 1) unit tests "ought" not to rely on an order but 2) we
>> might sometimes want to break that rule and control the ordering.
>>
>> But half of my interest in this thread is seeing how various people
>> think and use words.
>>
>> Would you say that the ordering of the words in a dictionary is
>> arbitrary?
>
>No, because there is a solid reason for the order of the words in the 
>dictionary, and that decision makes sense to me.  It could appear arbitrary 
>to SOME people, but I think only those in the fringes of society (aka, crazy, 
>fanatical, etc.).  Since I easily implemented test ordering, and can think of 
>many reasons to not be forced into running them alphabetically, yet Test/Unit 
>didn't give me the option, that's clearly arbitrary.  It was imposed on me, 
>there was no good reason, etc.  Lots of qualities make "arbitrary" a great 
>way to describe the ordering.
>
>        Sean O'Dell

Hum... I had a google search on "dictionary arbitray". One
link is http://www.freesearch.co.uk/dictionary/arbitrary
that describes two definitions, one of them includes:
"using unlimited personal power without considering other people's wishes".
See also http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=arbitrary
and http://www.hyperdictionary.com/dictionary/arbitrary
That is the negative connotations I was referring too earlier.

The definition you are using does not appear in 1913 Webster. It is
probably a recent one related to mathematics.

I guess we can safely assume that "arbitrary" is a double edge sword.
Now it is time to find a better adjective.

Yours,

JeanHuguesRobert

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