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Stupid questions: Would a "glossary" qualify as a system metaphor?

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  • Anil Hemrajani
    Ok, admittedly this might be a stupid question but in trying to stay consistent with XP terminology for my upcoming book, I was wondering what would a
    Message 1 of 7 , Feb 19, 2006
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      Ok, admittedly this might be a stupid question but in trying to stay
      consistent with XP terminology for my upcoming book, I was wondering
      what would a "glossary" would be called in the XP world? Is simply
      called just that, a glossary?

      By glossary, I'm referring to business terms (e.g. Invoice, Line Item,
      Pay Period Ending Date, etc.), more than technical terms.

      From reading Ron Jeffries page:
      http://www.xprogramming.com/xpmag/whatisxp.htm#metaphor, it sounds
      like a metaphor would be more about how the system works (e.g.
      classes, etc.) but I thought this excerpt might qualify a glossary as
      a system metaphor.?

      "XP teams use a common system of names to be sure that everyone
      understands how the system works"

      Of course, the dictionary definition of metaphor is as follows:


      metaphor
      n : a figure of speech in which an expression is used to refer to
      something that it does not literally denote in order to suggest a
      similarity
    • Ron Jeffries
      ... I d call a glossary a glossary. But a glossary isn t a metaphor, and the system of names that Jeffries was talking about there included class and variable
      Message 2 of 7 , Feb 19, 2006
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        On Sunday, February 19, 2006, at 5:07:10 PM, Anil Hemrajani wrote:

        > Ok, admittedly this might be a stupid question but in trying to stay
        > consistent with XP terminology for my upcoming book, I was wondering
        > what would a "glossary" would be called in the XP world? Is simply
        > called just that, a glossary?

        > By glossary, I'm referring to business terms (e.g. Invoice, Line Item,
        > Pay Period Ending Date, etc.), more than technical terms.

        >>From reading Ron Jeffries page:
        > http://www.xprogramming.com/xpmag/whatisxp.htm#metaphor, it sounds
        > like a metaphor would be more about how the system works (e.g.
        > classes, etc.) but I thought this excerpt might qualify a glossary as
        > a system metaphor.?

        > "XP teams use a common system of names to be sure that everyone
        > understands how the system works"

        I'd call a glossary a glossary. But a glossary isn't a metaphor, and
        the system of names that Jeffries was talking about there included
        class and variable names, not just human-oriented names.

        And a metaphor for the system is a whole 'nother thing entirely,
        since it meets your definition:

        > metaphor
        > n : a figure of speech in which an expression is used to refer to
        > something that it does not literally denote in order to suggest a
        > similarity

        Ron Jeffries
        www.XProgramming.com
        Example isn't another way to teach, it is the only way to teach.
        --Albert Einstein
      • Anil Hemrajani
        Thanks, guys. I ll leave it as glossary :-) Anil
        Message 3 of 7 , Feb 19, 2006
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          Thanks, guys. I'll leave it as "glossary" :-)


          Anil
          --- In extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com, Ron Jeffries
          <ronjeffries@...> wrote:
          >
          > On Sunday, February 19, 2006, at 5:07:10 PM, Anil Hemrajani wrote:
          >
          > > Ok, admittedly this might be a stupid question but in trying to stay
          > > consistent with XP terminology for my upcoming book, I was wondering
          > > what would a "glossary" would be called in the XP world? Is simply
          > > called just that, a glossary?
          >
          > > By glossary, I'm referring to business terms (e.g. Invoice, Line Item,
          > > Pay Period Ending Date, etc.), more than technical terms.
          >
          > >>From reading Ron Jeffries page:
          > > http://www.xprogramming.com/xpmag/whatisxp.htm#metaphor, it sounds
          > > like a metaphor would be more about how the system works (e.g.
          > > classes, etc.) but I thought this excerpt might qualify a glossary as
          > > a system metaphor.?
          >
          > > "XP teams use a common system of names to be sure that everyone
          > > understands how the system works"
          >
          > I'd call a glossary a glossary. But a glossary isn't a metaphor, and
          > the system of names that Jeffries was talking about there included
          > class and variable names, not just human-oriented names.
          >
          > And a metaphor for the system is a whole 'nother thing entirely,
          > since it meets your definition:
          >
          > > metaphor
          > > n : a figure of speech in which an expression is used to refer to
          > > something that it does not literally denote in order to suggest a
          > > similarity
          >
          > Ron Jeffries
          > www.XProgramming.com
          > Example isn't another way to teach, it is the only way to teach.
          > --Albert Einstein
          >
        • Luiz Esmiralha
          ... Ron, If someone would document a metaphor, do you think that a glossary, or something very alike, would be the result? Or documenting a metaphor is a
          Message 4 of 7 , Feb 20, 2006
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            On 2/19/06, Ron Jeffries <ronjeffries@...> wrote:
            > On Sunday, February 19, 2006, at 5:07:10 PM, Anil Hemrajani wrote:
            >
            > > Ok, admittedly this might be a stupid question but in trying to stay
            > > consistent with XP terminology for my upcoming book, I was wondering
            > > what would a "glossary" would be called in the XP world? Is simply
            > > called just that, a glossary?
            >
            > > By glossary, I'm referring to business terms (e.g. Invoice, Line Item,
            > > Pay Period Ending Date, etc.), more than technical terms.
            >
            > >>From reading Ron Jeffries page:
            > > http://www.xprogramming.com/xpmag/whatisxp.htm#metaphor, it sounds
            > > like a metaphor would be more about how the system works (e.g.
            > > classes, etc.) but I thought this excerpt might qualify a glossary as
            > > a system metaphor.?
            >
            > > "XP teams use a common system of names to be sure that everyone
            > > understands how the system works"
            >
            > I'd call a glossary a glossary. But a glossary isn't a metaphor, and
            > the system of names that Jeffries was talking about there included
            > class and variable names, not just human-oriented names.
            >
            > And a metaphor for the system is a whole 'nother thing entirely,
            > since it meets your definition:
            >
            > > metaphor
            > > n : a figure of speech in which an expression is used to refer to
            > > something that it does not literally denote in order to suggest a
            > > similarity
            >
            > Ron Jeffries
            > www.XProgramming.com
            > Example isn't another way to teach, it is the only way to teach.
            > --Albert Einstein
            >

            Ron,

            If someone would "document" a metaphor, do you think that a glossary,
            or something very alike, would be the result? Or documenting a
            metaphor is a sign that it is not actually ingrained in the mind of
            the Team (otherwise, people could teach the Metaphor to new team
            members instead of relying on a document)?

            Thanks,

            --
            Luiz Esmiralha
            Accenture - Brazil
            Tel.: +55 (21) 3823-0033
          • Ron Jeffries
            ... A metaphor is more like a story or a word picture than like a word list. I wouldn t be opposed to documenting a metaphor but I would think it ought to be
            Message 5 of 7 , Feb 20, 2006
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              On Monday, February 20, 2006, at 6:39:43 AM, Luiz Esmiralha wrote:

              > If someone would "document" a metaphor, do you think that a glossary,
              > or something very alike, would be the result? Or documenting a
              > metaphor is a sign that it is not actually ingrained in the mind of
              > the Team (otherwise, people could teach the Metaphor to new team
              > members instead of relying on a document)?

              A metaphor is more like a story or a word picture than like a word
              list. I wouldn't be opposed to documenting a metaphor but I would
              think it ought to be unnecessary. I prefer conversation over paper
              or electronic documentation wherever possible.

              Ron Jeffries
              www.XProgramming.com
              Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people
              always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can
              become great." -- Mark Twain.
            • Andrei Maxim
              Reading David West s Object Thinking I got the impression that a metaphor should describe the system as accurately as possible, yet bridge the technical lingo
              Message 6 of 7 , Feb 20, 2006
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                Reading David West's Object Thinking I got the impression that a metaphor
                should describe the system as accurately as possible, yet bridge the
                technical lingo with the business environment.

                The whole point was to use common words that might be easily understood and
                shouldn't need any definition.

                And since we're talking about metaphors, how could one keep track of them? I
                mean you use one metaphor for a part of the system, then start coding. What
                if the customer wants to come back to the metaphor and clear some things up?
                And what if there are many parts of the system that have used different
                metaphors? (if the experience says it's no longer a case, then somebody
                should say so) Is this where a glossary should come in place?

                Andrei

                On 2/20/06, Ron Jeffries <ronjeffries@...> wrote:
                >
                > On Monday, February 20, 2006, at 6:39:43 AM, Luiz Esmiralha wrote:
                >
                > > If someone would "document" a metaphor, do you think that a glossary,
                > > or something very alike, would be the result? Or documenting a
                > > metaphor is a sign that it is not actually ingrained in the mind of
                > > the Team (otherwise, people could teach the Metaphor to new team
                > > members instead of relying on a document)?
                >
                > A metaphor is more like a story or a word picture than like a word
                > list. I wouldn't be opposed to documenting a metaphor but I would
                > think it ought to be unnecessary. I prefer conversation over paper
                > or electronic documentation wherever possible.
                >
                > Ron Jeffries
                > www.XProgramming.com
                > Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people
                > always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can
                > become great." -- Mark Twain.
                >
                >
                >
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                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • George Dinwiddie
                ... I think the primary purpose of the metaphor is to provide a conceptual basis for the way the system is constructed. - George -- ... When I remember bygone
                Message 7 of 7 , Feb 20, 2006
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                  Andrei Maxim wrote:
                  > Reading David West's Object Thinking I got the impression that a metaphor
                  > should describe the system as accurately as possible, yet bridge the
                  > technical lingo with the business environment.
                  >
                  > The whole point was to use common words that might be easily understood and
                  > shouldn't need any definition.

                  I think the primary purpose of the metaphor is to provide a conceptual
                  basis for the way the system is constructed.

                  - George

                  --
                  ----------------------------------------------------------------------
                  When I remember bygone days George Dinwiddie
                  I think how evening follows morn; iDIA Computing, LLC
                  So many I loved were not yet dead, gdinwiddie@...
                  So many I love were not yet born. http://www.idiacomputing.com
                  'The Middle' by Ogden Nash http://www.agilemaryland.org
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