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Posted by Nicholas on October 31, 2002 18:06:24 UTC

I've never looked, but I'm not sure I see your point. We are constantly coming up with new words to describe things we see, most of which don't make it into everyday language (which the dictionary describes). Sometimes we redefine old words, like universe. Obviously, we're not completely bound by the dictionary, but there are many scientists who are extreme sticklers about language. When I wrote my first paper, my advisor insisted that I not write things like "This paper says..." because it was improper English (papers are inanimate). Everybody has to be careful about language or they will be incoherent. It's important that we always describe or define our terms.

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