Hi, My name is Jon Gwynne. I'm here because I like to write and because I have a wide-range of interests. I'll be looking in on many different pages. Some of the greatest activity has been on the Michael Crichton page, not because I'm a huge fan (I'm not), but because of a dispute over content with another user.
I tend to be a bit contrarian - arguing in particular for points of view that are controversial and conflict with commonly-held beliefs. I guess I've always had a thing for the underdog. ;->
I'm a (strictly for my own fun) musician and will probably contribute to many of the music pages as well as I get around to it.
I'm also a digital artist. I don't know what the policy is on such things, but if I can establish that it is OK, I may upload some examples of my work here. Other people seem to be doing it but wiki policy isn't as clear on this as it might be.
What does this mean? --JonGwynne 04:11, 5 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Abuse of the English Language
One of my missions here is to stamp out various abuses of the language. Some of my pet peeves include:
Misuse of the word "further"
Some people, still seem to think that "further" can be used to describe distance. Nothing could be farther from the truth. The word "further" is a synonym for "in addition to" and has nothing to do with distances or amounts.
Use of nouns as verbs
This one REALLY annoys me. I blame it on the advertising industry- you know who you are... people who think that the triumph of style over substance is a good thing... may you all be blessed. Anyway, here is a partial list of words that should NEVER be used as verbs in normal writing - mostly because there are better choices available:
- Leverage. This is a noun for crying out loud! It is something that you have, not something you do - unless you're an investment banker involved in leveraged buyouts.
- Partner. You don't want to say something like "I'm going to partner with them on the upcoming project" - unless you want to sound like a complete crazy person.
- Architect. The only thing that sounds stupider than someone using architect as a verb (i.e. "We're going to put Bob in charge of architecting the new system") is the person who uses the prefix "re-" with it. I have actually heard marketing cretins use the word "re-architect" seriously.
- Transition. This one is too obvious to need a comment but that doesn't stop some of the more inarticulate out there from misusing it.
- Liase (or Liaise). This one has been around for a while (apparent it was invented by the British military in the 1920s as a way to abuse French (a mangling of the French noun liaison) rather than corrupt their mother tongue) but it still sounds incredibly stupid.
- Parent. If ever there was an obvious noun, it was the word "parent". Parent is the person, not what the person does.
[a note from the same user below, who is still too stupid to figure out how to contact you otherwise:
Your list is not entirely correct; I admire the cause that you're fighting for, but you've decapitated a couple of innocents. Parent is a perfectly valid verb, and one that's been used as such for hundreds of years. Transition actually has a valid (intransitive) verb form, although I agree that there are usually better choices. SVI 23:01, 14 July 2005 (UTC)]
This is a lesser complaint, but still one that weighs on me. It is appropriate when writing to leave two spaces after the period at the end of a sentence. If you're reading this and it isn't something you do when you write, please try to do so in the future. Thank you.
- Note: After being alerted to this by an observant wiki user, I find that wikipedia TRUNCATES spacing so that even when I put double-spaces in the edit screen, it is displayed as single-spacing. This is ludicrous. If they're going to take liberties with other people's formatting, they should at least take the correct ones. If anyone in a position to do something about this is reading... please fix this.
[from another user: No, it is not at all appropriate, unless you're using a typewriter or some other form of writing where all readers will see a _monospaced_ font. Wikipedia is not included. Most web pages are not included, unless you specify the font as Courier or something (which is unfair to your readers, because most people find proportional fonts easier to read).
The only reason that double-space thing came about in the first place is that typewriters used monospaced fonts, and double-period spacing makes monospaced writing more readable. Web pages are almost always displayed with PROPORTIONAL fonts, and double-spacing with proportional fonts is ugly and distracting to the eye. That's probably why web browsers and most forms auto-truncate.
Oh, and sorry about editing your user page. I'm at work, and didn't know any other way to contact you. Yes, I know I should be working at work.]
The Barnstar of Valour
Yay! I'm back!
Sorry folks, but I've been a long time in a place where there was no convenient Internet connection and I'm now back to see what's new in the land of wiki. Sorry for being gone, I'm sure much excitement has happened in my absence. --JonGwynne 00:23, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
BTW, thanks for the awark Brittainia! It is nice to be appreciated. I'm a bit disappointed to learn that some local weasels have deleted the "Consensus Science" article I started and helped to write. I guess they can't handle the truth. Oh well, their loss. --JonGwynne 00:23, 27 March 2007 (UTC)