Hello, Failure

Of all the enemies of literature, success is the most insidious

Friday, August 08, 2003

Failure of the Day: Verbing the Noun

Just now I'm whiling away the morning waiting for the Microsoft Office 2003 Beta 2 Tech Refresh to finish installing. I like how they call it a "refresh," as though they took it to a spa or something rather than fixed the huge bugs in it.

Technology is weird. That's the best I can do after 3+ years of working for Microsoft more or less. I think I know a pretty fair amount of technical computer junk, but it's nothing compared to how much Chris knows, which in turn is nothing compared to how much programmers, database designers, and other uber-techies know.

But I think in truth, I don't know very much about the stuff at all. When it comes right down to it, all I really know how to do is edit Word documents. I'm good at editing Word documents, even when those documents are about other technical things that I don't understand. For example, see my fine copy edit of "Microsoft ASP.NET Programming with Microsoft Visual C#.NET Deluxe Learning Edition."

Yes, I read that book. Twice. I was able to do that because I know one simple rule: the noun verbs. Sometimes, the noun verbs adverbly. I don't need to know what the noun is or what the verb does, only that the noun verbs.

(This rule, although simple, is far beyond the understanding of the type of guy who would write a book called "Microsoft ASP.NET Programming with Microsoft Visual C#.NET Deluxe Learning Edition." One must continually explain to such an author that nouns are not verbs. No one is "tasked" with anything, because "task" is a noun and cannot describe action. When I have a headache, I do not aspirin myself.)

And I see that my refresh has been successfully installed, so if you'll excuse me, I have to go computer.


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