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action-152: "subsetting"

From: Kerry Taylor <kerry.taylor@anu.edu.au>
Date: Tue, 29 Mar 2016 12:10:20 +0000
To: SDW WG Public List <public-sdw-wg@w3.org>
Message-ID: <PS1PR06MB174009BC1A3D0B9DBD92D4CEA4870@PS1PR06MB1740.apcprd06.prod.outlook.com>
I have an objection to the use of the word "subsetting", prominent in the spatial community and leaking also into other "big data" technology discussions. It seems to have some heritage in the statistical community, too.
I partly dislike it because it is not a word, but also because the notion of a 'subset' feels wrong, as it treats a 'dataset' as an unstructured 'set' of things, whereas this is very rarely the case when "subsetting" is required.
The formal (and widely understood) mathematical notion of sets seems inappropriate.
Normally, the known structure is a very important part of the "subsetting" operation.

I do not think that "subsetting"  carries the intended meaning to the audience for whom our writing is directed - at least not to the "webby but not spatial expert" audience. I note ( probably due to our influence) DWBP is now also speaking of 'subsetting'.

I have some suggested alternatives I raise for consideration by the SDW, ordered best-first in my opinion.

Noun     Verb
extract  extracting
snippet  snipping
selection selecting
snip  snipping

Received on Tuesday, 29 March 2016 12:10:58 UTC

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