P2052 at AOL.COM P2052 at AOL.COM
Thu Jun 15 02:35:59 UTC 2000

Lately, I have observed a number of memos pluralizing the noun input (pl. inpu
ts), which I had assumed to be a mass noun.   While the various dictionaries
also cited verb forms, specifically -ed and -ing, none a 3rd person singular
form (-s), thereby precluding any possible confusion between the 3rd person
singular and the plural noun.  Is this a new trend which is applicable to
similar nouns, such as intake (pl. intakes), output (pl. outputs), or
feedback (pl. feedbacks)? Or is it specific to the word input?  Is this a
specialized term (I've seen it used primarily in memos from computer literate
military personnel .)  Or could this use possibly be a mistake that is having
ripple effects?

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