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Section 7.4

Technical Terms

Technical terms are an essential part of all technical andscientific writing. Each field and specialty typically uses avocabulary that relays a variety of specialized concepts by meansof technical language. These special terms convey concentratedmeanings that have been built up over significant periods ofstudy of a field. The value of a specialized set of terms liesin the way each term condenses a mass of information into asingle word. Technical terminology is often thought of as ashorthand, a way of gaining great depth and accuracy of meaning with economy of words. Technical terms often blendreadily into formulae and mathematicalmanipulation, a term such as force being folded into aformula such as f = ma. This quantification allows theconcept to be manipulated mathematically.

Technical terms can also lead to a great density of prose that isdifficult to understand, even for the specialized reader. Observe these four principles when using specialized terminology:

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