[Ads-l] Manually--now also by foot?

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Wed Jul 22 15:57:04 UTC 2015


> On Jul 22, 2015, at 11:32 AM, Dan Goncharoff <thegonch at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> How, in 1991, could he "do the computation on his laptop manually" without
> typing with his fingers on the keyboard and hitting the Enter key to
> execute each step? (Today you could use voice commands.)

That's why I said the OED cite "involve[s] a contrast between electronic and human energy, rather than between using a less automatized rather than a more automatized method" and suggested it needs to be updated, and why I used the Stephen Hawking example to make the point that hands need not be involved.

> 
> I don't see an issue with "manually" referring to a process requiring a
> finger on the keyboard to make each step happen.

Or a non-finger, in the case of voice commands or the Hawking-style communication.  

> 
> I do agree with the original point, thanks to Latin. I wonder if the author
> doesn't realize that "manually" means "by hand", and not "by a person".

Cf. our earlier thread noting the reanalysis of "mano a mano", as demonstrated by those (presumably unfamiliar with Spanish or other Romance languages) who refer to "womano a womano" confrontations.  But I'd put my money on the general shift of "manual" to mean 'non-automatic'.

LH

> Does the word "pedally" exist? ]8}
> 
> DanG
> 
> On Wed, Jul 22, 2015 at 11:13 AM, Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at yale.edu>
> wrote:
> 
>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>> -----------------------
>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Poster:       Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at YALE.EDU>
>> Subject:      Re: Manually--now also by foot?
>> 
>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> 
>>> On Jul 22, 2015, at 4:30 AM, Margaret Lee =
>> <0000006730deb3bf-dmarc-request at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> wrote:
>>> =20
>>> Subaru  has released a notice to owners of their Outback, Crosstrek, =
>> and Legacy models that the vehicles' Eyesight Driver Assist System is =
>> now a safety hazard due to a "brake lamp switch failure."  Eyesight is a =
>> safety device that is supposed to warn the driver of an imminent frontal =
>> collision and automatically stop the vehicle. In light of this safety =
>> defect, the driver will now have to "manually apply the brake pedal,"  =
>> according to the notice.  Does _manually_  now also mean performed by =
>> the foot?
>> 
>> If not, it sounds *extremely* inconvenient for the driver.  (But at =
>> least for me, "manually" has already generalized to "non-automatically" =
>> or "in a one-by-one-manner" in electronic contexts, e.g. having to =
>> change the footnote numbers in a document "manually" as opposed to using =
>> a global command. (You're still using the computer  The OED sort of =
>> alludes to this extended use, but not as explicitly as they might, in =
>> the "later use" half of the basic definition:
>> 
>> manually, adv.
>> 1a. With or using the hand or hands; by manual operation or =
>> intervention. In later use: by human effort rather than by automatic, =
>> electronic, etc., means.
>> 
>> And the one cite still does involve a contrast between electronic and =
>> human energy, rather than between using a less automatized rather than a =
>> more automatized method:
>> 
>> 1991   What Personal Computer Dec. 105/3   This meant the =
>> computer-generated statement of accounts couldn't be used, and had to be =
>> recalculated manually.
>> 
>> Is there another dictionary that contains the relevant meaning? (AHD =
>> doesn't.)  Notice that the use of "manually" I have in mind doesn't even =
>> need to involve the use of fingers or hands on a keyboard:
>> 
>> "Hawking couldn't get the program to work, so he had to do the =
>> computation on his laptop manually", where neither method involves using =
>> his fingers but the two differ in degree of automaticity. =20
>> 
>> LH
>> 
>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>> The American Dialect Society - https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.americandialect.org&d=AwIBaQ&c=-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=wFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsSxPIWYiZRsMFFaLQ&m=Sp8YXFswZmkB0nJegpMOXJOBD6X8B7YaqhrfSKMJSTw&s=qekG3Z6KdVaJdc9F_QfObVoJWVEHOmFQS078kAbq5YI&e= 
>> 
> 
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.americandialect.org&d=AwIBaQ&c=-dg2m7zWuuDZ0MUcV7Sdqw&r=wFp3X4Mu39hB2bf13gtz0ZpW1TsSxPIWYiZRsMFFaLQ&m=Sp8YXFswZmkB0nJegpMOXJOBD6X8B7YaqhrfSKMJSTw&s=qekG3Z6KdVaJdc9F_QfObVoJWVEHOmFQS078kAbq5YI&e= 

------------------------------------------------------------
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


More information about the Ads-l mailing list