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      09-23-2008, 08:15 PM   #38
bruce.augenstein@comcast.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
Bruce, I think you might be downplaying the meaning behind a name too much.
Quite the opposite. The entire concept of the automatic transmission was to free the driver from having to shift gears and row down the road. That's why it's called an automatic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
An automatic transmission is named such because of its overall functionality. But over time it has become associated with certain features, namely a torque converter. There have been derivatives of the aforementioned transmission, but they were only modifications. (ie. Steptronic, Tiptronic transmissions in BMW and Porsche) They were mechanically the same however.
Tying the term "automatic transmission" to how a device actually goes about being automatic is nonsense. "Automatic" means you don't have to intervene from time to time in order to get down the road, and tying "automatic" to "torque converter" is a specious argument.

Even so, your logic will need to embrace the Merc SL 7-speed, which doesn't have a torque converter. So - it's not an automatic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
Now when you talk about the M-DCT or the Audi/VW DSG. You are talking about a system that is mechanically different. No torque converter transmission with a gimmick shift lever, but an actual clutch. So the only trait that is shared between the 2 is that they both use gears, and that they both don't require the user to work a manual clutch. They are similar in direct interface alone which would be a pretty stereotypical way of associating anything.
Just how in the hell do you think the automatic transmission got its title, except by the direct interface? Jesus.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
In this case, a new name is warranted because the DCT is not an automatic transmission. It simply just functions 'automatically'. The difference is that the same word can be used to either describe or name the product in question. Yes, it does function automatically for the user. But it is not an "automatic" transmission.
Once again, the interface is what defines the name.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
A description that many consider to be taboo when used in conjunction with a competetive sportscar.
Yes. See note 26 in this string. Reason three.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
While you may be sitting there wondering why it matters what name you call it by,...
Nope. See note 26.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
...we are sitting here equally baffled and wondering why you won't just call it what it's named.
I have routinely referred to it by its marketing name, but of course that has nothing to do with my utter conviction that it's an automatic.

Incidentally, only some of you are wondering why I call it an automatic. For those, see note 26.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
Stop trying so hard to be different!
I'm not trying to be different, but I tend to exert no effort to be the same.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
Lastly, you said you wife was a car enthusiast but she knew nothing about cars. I believe you use the term enthusiast incorrectly here. I think the term shouldn't be used for someone whose interest in cars is only skin deep. I'm not trying to bash your wife or anything, and there is nothing wrong with just liking how cars look and not caring much more about them. I'm just saying that she wouldn't typically be classified as an enthusiast or a fanatic.
I believe that's another myopic view. Liking how cars look is important to most folks, but my wife, for instance, cares quite a lot about functionality. She just doesn't know about the inner workings. Restricting the use of the term "enthusiast" to someone who has a lot of car knowledge seems a little elitist to me. I think that a person who is excited or enthusiastic about cars is an enthusiast.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateBMW View Post
In both my cases above, the word doesn't matter quite as much. Just an arbitrary collection of letters. The meaning behind the word however is important. The meaning is what carries the weight and the idea with it. So, if you don't use the correctly matched words with their significantly more important meanings then you've just got something that poeple don't understand and will argue about.
I agree that word meanings are important, which is why I am still engaged in this ultimately boring exercise.

Bruce
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