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Re: Don't use the abbreviation "win" to refer to Windows.

From: Paul Eggert
Subject: Re: Don't use the abbreviation "win" to refer to Windows.
Date: Mon, 02 Jan 2012 10:57:55 -0800
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux i686; rv:8.0) Gecko/20111124 Thunderbird/8.0

On 01/02/12 05:53, Andy Moreton wrote:

> Microsoft themselves rarely refer to it as the "Windows API"

My impression is otherwise.  For what it's worth, the Google search
'"Windows API' site:microsoft.com' has about 68,900 hits, which is
nearly as many hits as "Win32 API" at the same site.  And outside
Microsoft, a Google search suggests that "Windows API" is used
more than twice as often as "Win32 API".

> (a less specific term in any case).

I'm no expert in the Windows API, but I suspect that in many (most?)
cases the less-specific term is appropriate in Gnulib.  We can change
the documentation to say something like "32-bit Windows API"
for the part where the number of bits actually matters and is
not already obvious from the context.  That'd be a further improvement
that is largely independent of the proposed change.

> Using the term "win32" does not connote winning or losing

No doubt it has that connotation only to some people, and not to
others.  But we should be communicating to as many people as
possible, including the people who see the connotation.

> The term "woe32" is insulting rather than descriptive

This seems to be inconsistent with the previous quote.
If "win32" doesn't connote "win", why would "woe32" connote "woe"?

I used "Woe32" because that seemed to be the second
most commonly used Gnulib term for this notion: it's currently
used 68 times in Gnulib.  "Woe32" is short for "Windows Operating
Environment, 32-bit".  The phrase "Windows Operating Environment"
itself is perfectly respectable, being used about 20,000 times on
microsoft.com according to Google.  I personally might have capitalized
the whole thing, e.g., "WOE" for the generic term and "WOE32" when
it's important to refer to the 32-bit variant; but the patch
defers to existing convention.

Admittedly the Microsoft marketing department is not likely to
approve of the acronym "WOE", but we're under no obligation
to do Microsoft's marketing.

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