[Haskell-cafe] Re: Paper draft: "Denotational design with type class morphisms"

Achim Schneider barsoap at web.de
Fri Feb 20 10:12:48 EST 2009

Robin Green <greenrd at greenrd.org> wrote:

> On Fri, 20 Feb 2009 15:17:14 +0100
> Achim Schneider <barsoap at web.de> wrote:
> > Conal Elliott <conal at conal.net> wrote:
> > 
> > > DRAFT version ___ comments please
> > >
> > Conal, please, PLEASE, never, EVER again use the word "meaning" if
> > you actually mean "denotation". It confuses the hell out of me,
> > especially the (I guess unintended) connotation that you analyse
> > the meaning of a particular instance's existence on a cosmic scale. 
> It shouldn't confuse you. Using "means" for "denotes", and likewise
> "meaning" for "denotation", is correct English, and very common usage
> too.
(length . denotations) "to mean" > (length . denotations) "to denote"

(read: "to denote" is more defined than "to mean")

Following your argument through, we should talk kinda like "hey, we do
something with that thingy to do that-other thingy to that thingy
over there". 99% of my former teachers would tear you to shreds... in
mid-air (during lift-off).

I can't talk about the whole of English usage, but I never saw
"meaning" in a mathematical context where "denotation" would work, too,
except in Conal's writings.

...and that doesn't even include that my native language isn't English
but German, in which "to mean" nounificates using another object: 
It translates to "Opinion" instead of "Denotation".
"deuten" (to intepret, to point) is a very well-defined concept in
German and doesn't like to be messed with.

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