Tags:
  1. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2010
    Messages:
    15,346
    Likes Received:
    13,067

    Usage: "Process"

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by ChickenFreak, Jun 26, 2017.

    So now and then I use the word "process", as in, say,

    It took him a day or two to process the event.

    And then I say, "No, that sounds computeresque; I need something else." But is it? I don't think so? People were processing fish and corn and wine grapes and iron ore and such, long before computers, right? The metaphor of taking raw materials and converting it to a finished product, and the metaphor of doing so with facts and one's brain, isn't modern, is it?

    Or is it?
     
  2. NoGoodNobu

    NoGoodNobu Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2016
    Messages:
    1,402
    Likes Received:
    1,970
    I didn't take it as a technical or mechanical or computer term until you lead me to think about it in that way.

    I use it in everyday language: ". . . well that was a new development. I'm not sure how to process this."
     
  3. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin I'm the man and you're the man and he's the man Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2017
    Messages:
    5,241
    Likes Received:
    9,513
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    You're fine. The brain "processes" information. I'm no neurologist but that's the term I always hear them use.
     
    izzybot likes this.
  4. agasfer

    agasfer Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2016
    Messages:
    53
    Likes Received:
    22
    Location:
    Haifa
    I agree that "process" is fine, but if you don't like it, often people use another word which is from another realm but is understood in the context: "digest". "It took him a day or two to digest the information" is understood that he was not literally putting it through a biological digestion process (unless he ate a book :) ), but processing it.
     
  5. SethLoki

    SethLoki Retired Autodidact Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2011
    Messages:
    1,317
    Likes Received:
    1,320
    Location:
    Manchester UK
    Consider?
     
  6. matwoolf

    matwoolf Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2012
    Messages:
    6,503
    Likes Received:
    9,325
    Location:
    Yorkshire
    Of itself it is passable, but if you wrote 'thinking outside the box, he processed the low hanging fruit opportunities down the pipe,' you might be executed in some utopia to come, and soon definitely. The future where a crop of IBM executives hang by shirt ties from sturdy branches, and are harvested at the hands of a delicate lady wearing a rustic pinny, and also clogs.
     
    xanadu and Cave Troll like this.
  7. Laurin Kelly

    Laurin Kelly Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2016
    Messages:
    2,255
    Likes Received:
    3,554
    I do as well - I wouldn't be askance at all in the contexts above.

    I've noticed a new word use recently come into play that's taking me some time to get used to: unpack. I've seen it used to describe the process of uncovering unconscious biases, examining where they stem from and how they affect social interactions on both small and large scale.
     
  8. jannert

    jannert Who? Whooo? Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    Messages:
    15,287
    Likes Received:
    16,971
    Location:
    Scotland
    There's always 'digest.' :) Organic processing.
    Analyse? Consider? Draw conclusions? Absorb? However, there is no need to just substitute a word either. You can make it clearer what the person is actually doing as they deal with the event or circumstance. Often this takes several steps.

    I think you may be sensing this use of 'process' is almost slangily new. Like input and throughput, and stuff like that. I don't remember my parents talking about 'processing' an occurence in this way. They would probably have said 'think about,' or 'come to terms with,' or something along these lines. Process seems kind of newspeaky new-age-y, corporate-speak, doesn't it? I imagine Apple employees 'process' quite a lot. Nothing wrong with it, and folks today certainly realise what it means, in context. But perhaps it doesn't give the right literary feel, in some instances.
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2017
  9. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll Thinking... Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2015
    Messages:
    16,062
    Likes Received:
    22,546
    Location:
    Where cushions are comfy, and straps hold firm.
    Process works. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

    Mull it over..for a bit. :)
     
  10. Thundair

    Thundair Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2017
    Messages:
    1,016
    Likes Received:
    813
    Location:
    San Diego
    In Oklahoma it's 'reckoning' (to process)
     
  11. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2010
    Messages:
    15,346
    Likes Received:
    13,067
    Thanks! (I just realized that I posted this, got several helpful answers, and didn't come back.) My net conclusion from the answers is that "process" is not what I want to use in the context where I'm using it--it has acquired too much modern computer flavor, even if its origin isn't about computers.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice