Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search
Green check.svg

The following information passed a request for deletion.

This discussion is no longer live and is left here as an archive. Please do not modify this conversation, but feel free to discuss its conclusions.


Also nominating: shift (sense), Shift, Scroll Lock, Print Screen, Pause (English), Page Up, Page Down, Num Lock, Insert, Ins, Home, End, Delete, delete (sense), Del (sense), Ctrl, Caps Lock, Alt (English), fire (sense), jump (sense), stop (sense), rewind (sense), play (sense), fast forward (sense), and their alternative spellings/forms, abbreviations, and plurals. (Did I miss any?)​—msh210 (talk) 20:20, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Since your goal was clearly nominating all the names of buttons, you missed at least this: . --Daniel. 20:29, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Thanks. Tagged also.​—msh210 (talk) 16:21, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
I tagged Enter and enter too, per TeleComNasSprVen. I'm going to create Reset, Power and Select now, and tag them too. --Daniel. 18:04, 9 February 2011 (UTC)

Video game controller button. It is the name of a button, like Play, Fast Forward, Open, triangle shape (on PlayStation controllers), Up, Left, A, B, X, Y (on many game controllers), etc., and thus serves to label the button. It is not a noun meaning "this particular kind of button". Equinox 19:56, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Just commenting. When you say "it is the name of a button", isn't that the same as saying it's a noun (or at least proper noun) meaning "button"? I don't think merely the label for a button: consider unlabeled keyboards. It's the button's function, or usual label. (I've now added to this nomination a bunch of others, above.)​—msh210 (talk) 20:20, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
I agree that any button can be called by what is written on it. Mglovesfun (talk) 20:34, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
True. People say "A and D move your character right and left; W and X up and down" (in a computer game). Analogous to the senses here being debated are potential senses of every letter and digit.​—msh210 (talk) 20:45, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Weeell...the OED does have play (the control on a tape player, video recorder etc.). Some of them seem more likely to be thrown into a sentence than others, but I suppose it depends who you hang out with. Not really sure why some of them are in caps either. Any button can be called by what's written on it, but some labels are vastly more common than others. Weak keep, given the right cites. Ƿidsiþ 20:39, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Keep Citations:Shift and Citations:Start as attested. Probably just keep all others as attestable, though citations can be tracked for them as well. --Daniel. 21:13, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
The four citations in the right form for Shift don't come close to attesting the encyclopedic definition, which should be deleted. I suspect that RfV will lead to a radical simplification of the definitions. It would be nice if Modern English contributors added only the citations that supported the form on the page. We can afford to be picky in Modern English and thereby assist users in avoiding forms that are not in use. DCDuring TALK 22:39, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Several OneLook dictionaries have shift key as an entry. Citations seem to show that shift and Shift are used to mean shift key. If this is typical, then all of those entries "X" that often collocate with "key" to mean "X key" we should move to RfV. DCDuring TALK 00:11, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Some thoughts: I believe you've forgotten one of the most widely used buttons on the keyboard, the Enter key. I'd favor deletion of the two-word entries, such as "Num Lock" or "Page Down", because they appear to be uncitable non-idiomatic and/or encyclopedic material, and depending on which keyboard one is using may have different case than the ambiguous ones currently presented here. Note also the existence of a few entries created directly from the use of the keys that also may meet WT:CFI, namely asdfghjkl; and qwertyuiop. TeleComNasSprVen 01:59, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
This discussion is getting a bit fragmented. The abbreviated forms like alt (or Alt) and alt gr probably need an entry as it's not obvious what they mean. I don't actually know what either of those mean! But ones where what's written on the key is merely a command like delete should be deleted. If we kept all of these, it would be hard to delete key-name sense of a, b, c or even up, down, left, right. Mglovesfun (talk) 10:00, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
@TCNSV: The meanings, the capitalizations, the plurals and abbreviations of both "Num Lock" and "Page Down" are not clearly understood from their individual parts.
The argument of "depending on which keyboard one is using may have different case than the ambiguous ones currently presented here" is void for the purpose of excluding the discussed entries. We are not discusing keyboards, their merits and details; we are discussing about inclusion or exclusion of each key, presumably by their own individual merits.
If you zoom this picture of a VT100 and look its right side, you may notice that there is a button named "PF3". If I am correct, this means "Menu" and is far obscure (i.e., outdated) by modern standards. If the fact that PF3 means "Menu" is attestable, it surely deserves to be mentioned in a dictionary of technology of the 1970s, or else sentences such as "You don't need to have a PF3 because you can click on the options of your VT100 emulator with a mouse" would possibly not be understood by all readers. Wiktionary is a dictionary of technology of the 1970s (among various other types of dictionary simultaneously), therefore Wiktionary should eventually mention the use of PF3. Wiktionary is also a dictionary of technology as a whole, therefore it should list all the attestable buttons. --Daniel. 10:29, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
I don't think we count labels on objects as attestation under existing policy. That's a BP matter.
The main issue is whether there is some context in which the words used to specify a key or its function are used in a new way. One indication of novel use is that the wording of the existing definitions does not substitute directly into the new usage. The literature of user manuals provides plenty of opportunity for such novel usage. It may be that existing definitions (as of control, delete, break, escape) can be so adjusted. I don't see how that can be done with many of the other attestable-in-running-text key labels.
I am reasonably sure that expressions such as enter key have been more common in this sense in speech than enter. Even today first use in a work may be of the longer form or there may be an explanation of the formatting used to distinguish, 1., user actions (typing; mouse, trackball, touchpad), 2., what appears on screen, 3., ordinary running text. The varied orthography (eg, "Delete", "delete", "del", "Del") may make the pronounceable delete key a sensible main entry -- or not.
This class of entries has some coverage in dictionaries. To me, the principle of coverage of the class seems hard to challenge. Of course, attestation and presentation remain. I do not see the need to add senses for each letter and number to indicate the key. I don't know about entries for key labels such as PF3 or F7. OTOH, I would not be surprised to find "F1" or "F1 key" to have usage that warranted an entry, possibly defined as help key. DCDuring TALK 13:10, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Daniel, "Num Lock" might mean to lock the number side of the keyboard from use and "Page Down" might just be a command to move down a page viewed on a computer. There's also the ambiguity to consider whether the noun/command might refer to the function of the key or the key used itself. When I said "depending on which keyboard one is using may have different case than the ambiguous ones currently presented here" I meant you need to consider not only the keys but also the combinations of keys as a whole when included on a keyboard or on a piece of work used to attest the keys or keyboard in question; and in addition to that consider which letter case of the keys (e.g. "Shift" or "shift") would be included in Wiktionary. TeleComNasSprVen 07:58, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
The entry stop contains a sense for the function and another for the button. It makes sense to mention both the abstract concept and what activates it somewhere. (to comply with "press stop", "my control has a hole in place of the stop button" and "the second test version of this media player finally comes with stop and pause functions").
If both shift and Shift are attestable, I believe both should be included on Wiktionary. I'm talking about attestation in sentences such as the ones from Citations:Shift; I'm strongly assuming that the mere existence of a button in different keyboards does not count for the attestation of any of the senses or spellings in question.
If there are any other similar senses, such as "num locking", they should be added too. Notably, the "Num" of "Num Lock" is restricted to the numerical keypad, and does not shift states of numbers outside the numerical keypad; this fact may be mentioned at the relevant entry. --Daniel. 08:30, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
It seems to me that what any of these keys actually do is not the main concern of a dictionary. The main concern is how the terms are used and what they attestably mean in use. Valid attesting quotations in usage, not mention, in running text determines the modest subset of the encyclopedic meaning that makes for a dictionary definition. A dictionary entry seems to document to the tiny amount of shared information about a real-world object or concept that is actually involved in the usual use of a word in language. An implication would be that one does not improve a dictionary entry be making it longer. In contrast an encyclopedia article is an introduction to the vast amount of information that is potentially available on the subject. 12:03, 5 February 2011 (UTC) DCDuring TALK 12:18, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
What about (hypothetical) attestations that document the use of the term in reference to a key's function (e.g. the command "delete" shown in action on the computer screen) and those that document the use of the term in reference to the key itself (e.g. the "Delete" you see on the keyboard)? Should we include both uses of the term were we to find such attestations? Or just the key and not, as you say, what it does? TeleComNasSprVen 20:51, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
FWIW, if I see a clickable "delete" shown in action on the computer screen, it would simply be a nonphysical button. --Daniel. 22:55, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
I take a radically usage-/attestation-based approach. It serves to keep me focused on language, not concepts or objects, which I think is appropriate for Wiktionary. Concepts and objects are for WP. I try to respect w:Use-mention distinction in looking for attestation. And also the "durably archived" criterion. And I think running text alone enables us to maintain contact with speech, which is an important aspect of usage, representing a very high share of the total human use of many common words.
I don't know which of delete key, Delete key, Delete, delete, Del, or del should be main entry for the sense(s) we are discussing. Probably Del and del are not good candidates even if very frequently used. Delete/delete, Delete key/delete key; and Del/del each have distinct inherent usage characteristics (risk of confusion with other terms, ease/naturalness of pluralization, length, pronouncability, ease of typing, correspondence to real-world entities or labels of entities) which may effect how common they are in usage. DCDuring TALK 23:09, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
We require usage in running text. Citations:Shift and Citations:Start look pretty good to me. DAVilla 07:33, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

I vote keep Delete, and rest on the strength of the following argument. I argue to properly respect the listed buttons names as proper buttons. While some have are predominately label like attributes the attitude overstated above is a vociferous over generalization.

Wise Wiktionarian, be not overfastidious and trust me, a man whose trilingualated keyboard has of long been plastered with labels, when I advise you to not to confuse label, button, headwords and word sense and good sense. To clarify, try and help me answer these rhetorical questions.

  • Is the eponymous Enter a label, a head word or a word sense? If it is a label what does the full-label say?
    • "Enter the previous text" - in the web form context.
    • "Accept the current option" - in the GUI context.
    • "Drop a CRLF onto the stack" in the context of word editing c.f. [Carrige Return] [Line Feed] which were also glorified button on all typewriters but have been relegated comfortable obscurity of dictionary entries.
    • All of the above and possibly more wordsenses which are different from senses unrelated to IT
  • Next is the odious eponymous [Delete]. Delete is harder to argue for but Delete is has a significantly different action from its evil twin [Backspace]
    • "Delete the next character after the caret" in the context of editing text is a label for
    • "Delete" also mean delete the selected object in the context of a GUI.
  • the eponymous Backspace is not - it features pictogram. But i would be hardpressed to comunicate about the keyboard without thus term.
  • Last but not least is Z.It does not have an button entry, why is that? I rest my case.

I'd like to give DCDURING comment (the short one). OrenBochman 22:16, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

Did you mean to agree with the short one near the top about the encyclopedic definition? DCDuring TALK 18:59, 24 March 2011 (UTC)

I'm closing this discussion after months without contributions. The result was:

  • Kept: A good and long conversation, but no consensus. People suggested multiple times moving these entries to RFV. If anything, the discussion can continue there.

--Daniel 17:01, 23 May 2011 (UTC)

Green check.svg

The following information passed a request for deletion.

This discussion is no longer live and is left here as an archive. Please do not modify this conversation, but feel free to discuss its conclusions.


Does this belong? I'd say no, but what do I know? To me, this looks like an overly specific definition of a start button, which in itself is quite SoP-ish. And who needs Start button? --Hekaheka 23:09, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

note: this survived an RfD before: Talk:Start -- Liliana 22:10, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
I see, but the definition is still too narrow. Nowadays, there are cars that have a "Start" button instead of a key. There are also millions of pieces of machinery with "Start" buttons, and they have been around way earlier than joysticks.Also they are sometimes referred to as "start" or "Start" if you like. If we expand the definition to include also these, it will become the definition of a "start button". If we still want to keep this entry, maybe we should also have START, because the fully capitalized form is quite common on start buttons. It is easily attestable that START is used also in permanently archived texts. I still don't think that the mission "every word etc." should be understood as "every thinkable capitalization". --Hekaheka 20:20, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
There was a whole set of these that passed, like Up, Down, Rewind etc. (Those might not be real examples, but I do remember there were plenty that passed.) I don't agree with them either. Equinox 20:22, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
You seem to say that "Start" has a lot of different meanings. (presumably in running text, as to be attestable) Why only the video game button is defined at the entry Start, while the rest is not? --Daniel 21:39, 6 February 2012 (UTC)
None of the buttons should be there. They are just buttons marked with "start", which we define at the verb start. The fact that a video game's start button sometimes pauses the game is not additional information about the word start; it is encyclopaedic information about video game consoles. After all, you would never say you were "starting" a game when you were pausing it. Equinox 21:58, 6 February 2012 (UTC)
@Equinox: "None of the buttons should be there." Does this thesis apply to keyboard keys as well? (Both entries for keyboard keys and for video game buttons are kept together at Category:en:Buttons)
In particular, "Shift" is very well-known (even in languages other than English, probably because that key name is regularly left untranslated in foreign QWERTY keyboards) as the capitalization key; and the key for typing "upper" characters like Shift+2=@. But, these functions probably would be unclear to someone who is computer illiteratte, (like some people I've known) so I strongly support having a definition for that modifier key.
Differently, an entry for Start as a button of video games seems much less informative, because every game has its own use for it: choosing options, being a modifier key (like: "press Start+A to make something happen!"), activating cheats, pausing while displaying move charts, just pausing, etc. They are established functions, so people expect them (I'd automatically try to pause any game by pressing Start, even if I didn't read specific instructions telling me to do that), but they could be better and detailedly explained at each individual game's manual/article/fansite/chatroom/etc.
All these functions do have something interesting in common, nonetheless: they are "nondiegetic", they are not part of the action. A Start button rarely or never is used to make a character kick, jump, shoot, move, etc. but rather to give some kind of fourth-wall control to the player. If we have a video game definition for Start in the first place, we'd better mention this fact! But, as I said, the whole entry probably has not much practical use for someone who is reading sentences with "and you should press Start and blahblahblah".
Even after one year of creating that entry, I'm taking my time to think about it. Differently from other people, I don't have an absolute opinion either for deleting or for keeping it, even though I'm inclined to defend the second outcome for rather weak reasons: first of all, you mentioned the verb section of start, but I do believe it's a terrible place to look for information about the button. Nothing there suggests that a whole worldwide gaming culture has the custom of pressing Start to pause games. And, second, Start links to the category where people can see which buttons are defined here and learn more about them. --Daniel 08:26, 7 February 2012 (UTC)
Daniel, yes, I believe we shouldn't have entries for keyboard keys unless they are abbreviations (e.g. PgDn for page down, which is no more intuitive than Ltd for limited) or mean something more than the word itself (whereby shift might qualify, because there (probably?) isn't a verb "shift" meaning "to change a character to upper case or a symbol", or if there is, it must be derived from the key name). "Start" does not fall under either of these criteria because the button is merely so named because it starts something. Should we have a "Volume" entry saying "used to mark the knob in a car that changes the volume of the radio"? Of course not. Same thing. As for "Start" also pausing a game, or bringing up menus, etc. — that's like a computer program where the "Space" key is used to move to the next e-mail message. It isn't a new sense for the word "Space"; it is simply a function of the hardware, using a key for something it wasn't originally designed for. It is not a lexicographical issue. Delete. Equinox 23:32, 8 February 2012 (UTC)
If you want me to reply to some specific statement, let me know.
car is defined as a vehicle, as that's how a car is supposed to be used; if I see someone sleeping in a car, I would not want to create a new sense for it as "a place where people sleep"; but I could mention that on bed. The space button is supposed to place the space symbol (and, technically, to be available for any other less important and less widespread arbitrary functions as the programs demand); even if it can be used to move to the next e-mail message in only one or few programs, that would not merit a new sense, in my book. --Daniel 15:06, 23 March 2012 (UTC)
BTW, Daniel, you said: "Nothing there suggests that a whole worldwide gaming culture has the custom of pressing Start to pause games." Equally, nothing at butter knife suggests that many people use a butter knife to cut bread, even though it isn't designed for that, and they should traditionally use a bread knife. But is that something we want to write about here, in a dictionary, describing the meanings of words? Equinox 23:42, 8 February 2012 (UTC)
The fact that butter knife is defined here and is supposedly attestable (from "independent" and "durable" sources and whatnot) suggests — or, rather, affirms — that people use that term to represent the concept of a butter knife. By analogy, maybe for greater accuracy I should have said how people "use the word 'Start' to represent that button" instead of how people have "the custom of pressing Start", as that is related but of less importance.
By the way, based on what you said about the utensil, the wording of butter knife is inaccurate, since it says "used ONLY to serve out pats of butter" (uppercase mine). --Daniel 15:06, 23 March 2012 (UTC)
The definition we had was for a "master butter knife" which I guess may also be called "butter knife" when there's no danger of confusion. I rewrote the definition and moved former definition to a usage note. --Hekaheka (talk) 15:41, 23 March 2012 (UTC)
@Hekaheka: Do you oppose having any and all definitions for buttons? Or, maybe, you only oppose having multiple spellings and wordings for the same buttons (START, Start, start, start button)? --Daniel 08:26, 7 February 2012 (UTC)
I oppose inclusion of definitions and entries of the type "start - a button that starts something". They are as useless as the definition "car - a piece representing a player in Monopoly shaped as a car" would be. *Start button" is on the edge, but I guess one cannot expect to get everything one wants. --Hekaheka (talk) 15:41, 23 March 2012 (UTC)
The previous RFD ended in no consensus. It's fair to start a new discussion (though IMO it's a bit soon to start it if there's nothing new to bring to it).​—msh210 (talk) 16:47, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
Or START I suppose. Mglovesfun (talk) 13:55, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
For the record I strongly oppose [1] this edit by Daniel and do not agree with his justification for it. Equinox 13:30, 26 February 2012 (UTC)
That's not an argument, though. At least, my edit had a justification. --Daniel 15:06, 23 March 2012 (UTC)
What? I didn't say it was an argument. I was just pointing out that your edit was stupid, so that when you're gone it can be reverted :) Equinox 21:20, 18 April 2012 (UTC)

kept per no consensus -- Liliana 16:57, 17 April 2012 (UTC)