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Possible misinterpretation?

Possible misinterpretation?

Possible misinterpretation?

Ref:  thread404-258498: King pin disconnection from trailer

Following are two postings extracted from the above thread:

kingnero (Mechanical)    8 Nov 09 11:17
"Also worth checking that you've bought pins machined from forgings, not from bar stock."

Would you mean by this that his equipment breaks because he bought forgings, or that he should buy kingpins machined from bar stock?
zeusfaber (Military)    8 Nov 09 12:28
So we don't give the OP the wrong idea, my preference is:

Forging: More suitable

Bar stock:  Less suitable.

I think that's what my posting implies as well:  Happy to discuss why if you want to raise it in the Engineering Language/Grammar Skills Forum.
Reading zeusfaber's original post (partly quoted above), I understood his implication.  I also see how it could be misunderstood and kingnero is giving constructive criticism or gently heckling.  Maybe it is constructive heckling?  Oohh the limitless possible nuances of language.  Or should that be, "...within language."?

kingnero's question triggers two more questions from me.  One will be here and one on the mecahanical forum, although I am tempted to post it on the metallurgy forum.  But those guys who grew up with an urge to work with metals also frequent the mechanical forum.

RE: Possible misinterpretation?

My vote is for constructive criticism with some heckling (as you put it) to boot. I can also see the misunderstanding, especially if you start to think about the possible different language barriers on this forum. I see problems converting from USA English, to Australian English. Imagine the problems if the OP's first language is not English.

I get these corrections all the time, but that could be because I speak my own language,a mix between cr$p and Dribble.

Arguing with an engineer is like wrestling with a pig in mud. After a while you realize that they like it

RE: Possible misinterpretation?

I read those posts at the time, and considered kingnero's post just a request for clarification, neither criticism or heckling.

RE: Possible misinterpretation?

Our profession is supposed to be fairly precise.  And, sometimes with drawings, the proper analysis and calcs., etc., it can be.  When we try to put it into words, many times we fail miserably. When you said "limitless possible nuances of language," maybe what you meant was 'limitless potential for misinterpretation,' unless you are very careful and tailored, in your speech, to the knowledge level of your audience.

I understood that zeusfaber(Mil) preferred forgings for the king pin, and my experience lead me to agree with him.  Half the audience probably let that go in one ear and out the other, without a second thought.  And, a few would have been to timid to ask why forgings.  I find this forum format to be a fairly difficult format in which to relay meaningful info.  For starters, 15 posts intervene btwn. the 'provoking comment' and the 'why,' or the correction, so it's difficult to connect the two.  Secondly, the format seems tailor made for the quick & dirty, mostly thoughtless, maybe smart-assed reply.  It is pretty darn time consuming to compose a meaningful answer to a meaningful question; let alone to a question where the asker doesn't know enough about his subject matter to include enough info. so the question can be answered, or even understood.

I'm always catching hell for my long posts, and wondering is it even worth the time and effort.  No doubt, there is probably plenty of room for misinterpretation, if the reader is looking for that.  I always try to think; 'I understand what I mean, hopefully it's correct info.,'' now read it again, Dick, from the other guys perspective or experience level, will he understand what I mean, or could I say it in a way that he would better understand what I mean?'  Thus, I say the same thing two different ways to try to hone-in on only one conclusion for what I mean.

I suspect that if the four of us sat down, with a sketch pad, and a beer to lub. our tongues and minds, we could communicate much better than we do in writing, in this forum format.  First of all I could stop you or visa-versa, and ask 'what did you say,' 'isn't this what you meant,' 'what experience leads you to believe that,' 'please explain further, I don't understand,' 'no, this is why that's wrong.'  And, we could draw a sketch of what we mean, instead of 15 intervening conversation, and no sketch, or difficulty in drawing the other person out without causing hurt feelings.  I have had a number of really good mentoring experiences in my career, from both sides of that relationship.  And, it seems that the important thing is that we were there together looking at the same drawings, specs.,  calcs., etc. and there could be immediate interaction, correction, direction about where to look for the answer, etc.  Be careful what you write in these forums, and be even carefuller how you say it.  And, metman, as for "what's up with up," all I can think of to say is 'up yours,' then you will truly know where it went, and be able to keep track of it.  smile

RE: Possible misinterpretation?


Actually I meant for nuances to include misinterpretation which I thought would be implied by the subject line.

I also find it difficult to summarize so we at least have that in common and maybe I can appreciate your long post more than most because you have hit the nail on the head about the whole reason for the thread.

what hokie66 said is precisely one of the thoughts that went through my head before posting here and I would not have even thought to do it except for zeusfaber's comment about discussing it here.  Communication is what it is all about and the technical subject holds enough interest for me to have made that post elsewhere.

Some time ago Jim, a moderator on eng-tips, started a thread with the subject line, "What's up with up?"  Sorry dhengr but you won't find it where you thought you put it.  It must be somewhere in e-space.


RE: Possible misinterpretation?

With the benefit of time to reflect on it:

I think most native English speakers would have recognised the intention implicit within what I wrote.

What I should have recognised, and what makes kingnero's intervention valuable, is that there were lots of clues in the head of the thread that English is probably not erdd (the OP)'s first language.

My vote would be "constructive heckling" - I felt that kingnero knew what I meant but realised that others might not.


RE: Possible misinterpretation?


Very astute.  Exactly my impression but I could not have worded it so concisely.  This is what makes these eng-tips forums so much fun.  We can hold each other to high standards and venture to make sense out of a little nonsense.

RE: Possible misinterpretation?

I appreciate zeusfaber's insight and forbearance.  English is my first language, but I travel to a lot of places where I am having to communicate in my second, third or fourth language.  Then I am the one struggling to get it out and said somewhat right.  It think this is doubly true in technical speak rather than everyday conversation.

So I try to have a little sympathy for those who come here and try to communicate in a language that is not their first language.

I lose patience with forum members who give some poster grief for his/her language if it appears that otherwise the poster is doing any type of decent job of trying to make it work.

A star for you zeusfaber.


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