Subject: Re: about VAXstation performance
To: None <>
From: der Mouse <mouse@Rodents.Montreal.QC.CA>
List: port-vax
Date: 07/29/2000 00:49:01
>> As for what "MIP" is, it's the singular of "MIPS".  [...]
> Double blunder... MIPS isn't a plural word, it's short for "million
> instructions per second", which makes "MIP" just silly. "million
> instructions per" what?

As I explained when thorpej made the same point in a different way,
that doesn't matter when back-forming.

> Backforming just don't work that way...

My dear friend, that is *exactly* how back-formation works: by
"incorrectly" assuming that a word that appears as though it might have
been formed by a regular process from some root was in fact so formed,
and inferring the root therefrom.

As online webster puts it:

back-formation n
1: a word formed by subtraction of a real or supposed affix from an
     already existing longer word (as burgle from burglar)
2: the formation of a back-formation

I could argue about the "longer" part, but for the purposes of
discussing the "MIPS -> MIP" issue, it doesn't matter.  If it really
bothers you, I can probably be convinced to invest the effort necessary
to dig up references to linguistics literature....

					der Mouse

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