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by Brian J Ford, London: Wolfe, 1971

Confusing the public with long words: the buzz-word generator

by Brian J Ford

Page 85: In writing a paper or a book for a publisher in one's field, it is obviously necesary to stick to the terms of the trade, and to use obscurantism wherever possible. The purpose of this is to prevent one's work from being read and misinterpreted by ignorant outsiders, and perhaps to discourage an over-inquisitive interest shown by an Expert rival. By the time one has reached the higher echelons of Nonscience, as a fully qualified Expert, obscurantism is instinctive. As a reflex, almost, one would say:

'We have accomplished this manoeuvre by the expedient of utilising manually induced frictional heating on topographical substrate high-spots inducing a consequent oxidative/heating effect in the adjacent chemical microenvironment with inherent self-propagating proclivities, and leading inevitably to the initiation of the oxidative process, in a self-sustaining mode, of the contained cellular lignin core'

rather than the bald an uninspiring:

'we struck a match'.

In the writing up of technical reports the regular and frequent utilisation of state-of-the-art terminology is vital. In this respect it is helpful to refer to a nomenclature table (more colloquially known as a buzz-word generator) of the kind shown below.

The Buzz-word Generator

0 synchronised monitored parameters
1 total digital facility
2 reciprocal responsive concept
3 systematised management flexibility
4 integrated logic programs
5 functional correlative option
6 incremental balanced hardware
7 parallel optical contingency
8 compatible third-generation mobility
9 transitional policy projection

Hard-to-fill gaps in reports, theses, papers etc. are simply run off as any selected three-digit number which is then transposed in the above table. Thus we might select 582 and 437, which would generate 'functional third-generation facility' and 'integrated responsive contingency', both of these being terms that can be usefully employed in any piece of Expert writing.

Page 88: The SIMP Modular Prose System which, by selection of a phrase from each column can generate Nonscience-viable prose for use in reports, articles and paperts. The columns can be used in several different combinations.

1. In particular, 1. a large portion of the interface coordination communication  1. must utilise and be functionally interwoven with 1. the sophisticated hardware.
2. On the other hand, 2. a constant flow of effective information  2. maximises the probability of project success and minimises the cost and time required for   2. the anticipated fourth generation equipment.
3. However, 3. the characterisation of specific criteria  3. adds explicit performance limits to  3. the subsystem compatibility testing.
4. Similarly, 4. initiation of critical subsystem development  4. necessitates that urgent consideration be applied to  4. the structural design, based on system engineering concepts.
5. As a resultant implication, 5. the fully integrated test programme implication  5. requires considerable systems analysis and trade-off studies to arrive at 5. the preliminary qualification limit.
6. In this regard, 6. the product configuration baseline  6. is further compounded when taking into account  6. the evolution of specifications over a given time period.
7. Based on integral subsystem considerations 7. any associated supporting element  7. presents extremely interesting challenges to 7. the philosophy of commonality and standardisation.
8. For example, 8. the incorporation of additional mission constraints

8. recognises the importance of other systems and the necessity for

8. the greater fight-worthiness concept.
9. Thus, 9. the independent functional principle  9. effects a significant implementation of 9. any discrete configuration mode.
0. In respect to specific goals 0. the primary inter-relationship between system specific goals, and/or subsystem technologies  0. adds overriding performance constraints to 0. the total system rationale

Technical reports can occasionally require the use of liberal admixtures of sophisticated and specialised syntax, without which it will lose a certain aura of distinction and sophisticated savoir-faireness. To this end it is as well to memorise the Simplified Integrated Modular Prose writing system (above) developed by Honeywell Computer specialists. Using this SIMP kit, up to 40,000 different sentences - each one grammatically precise and duly Expertistical - can be generated.

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