Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Shear ignorance

Since I posted my rant about spelling and punctuation, I've stumbled over another couple of horrors. Perhaps this is going to turn into a theme.

So here are the latest. To spare the blushes of the authors and the editors responsible, I won't name names.

"Slight of hand".

Should be sleight, of course.

"The metal was sheered away by the force of the blow."

Should be sheared. For the technically-minded reader, ductile materials like metals fail by the action of shear stress rather than normal stress. OK, you didn't need to know that.

"univerisity". Poor proof-reading.

Finally, for now, misuse of words: using "infer" or "inference" when what is meant is "imply" or "implication". I don't need to explain the difference to you, do I?

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