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6.2. Terms and names > 6.2.2. Definitions - Pg. 157

136 CHAPTER 6 Fact models 1. a term to signify the categorization scheme by which interests in land are categorized, and 2. a term to signify an instrument (official document) registering a mortgage of estate. The team duly came up with interest in land type and mortgage of estate instrument, but these are not quite right. The term interest in land type appears to signify an interest in a type of land rather than a type of interest in land, and mortgage of estate instrument appears to signify the mortgage of an estate instrument (if there is such a thing) rather than an instrument registering a mortgage of estate. The cor- rect terms are type of interest in land and instrument for mortgage of estate. Note that, if the original terms are changed to land interest and estate mortgage, two options are now available for each of the new concepts: 1. either land interest type or type of land interest; 2. either estate mortgage instrument or instrument for estate mortgage. Yet another problem can arise when a term is created by prefixing a noun with both an adjective and another noun. I was amused by a recent newspaper article about "Ancient DNA Experts": was `ancient' a reference to the DNA or the experts? I also recall an HR system that included the screen legend "Short Employee Name" in which to enter an eight-character abbreviated form of each employee's name: I found myself wondering why short employees had a special data item of their own. 6.2.2 Definitions Each term must have a definition which clearly and unambiguously defines which objects are and are not covered by the term. The definition of a business term may be 1. intensional, in which the objects covered by the business term are defined as members of a more general class with one or more distinguishing characteristics: for example, minor: a person whose age is less than the age of majority; 2. extensional, in which the objects covered by the business term are listed: for example, minor: a boy or a girl. Each definition should meet the following quality criteria: 1. Wherever possible, each definition should in the first instance be sourced from a. any existing business glossary, b. any procedural documentation produced by the organization, c. any relevant legislation, d. a specialized dictionary (if any) for the industry in which the organization operates, e. a general dictionary of the English language. 2. Each definition should be unambiguous. 3. No definition should be misleading, in the sense that any reader might infer either a. inclusion of inappropriate instances in the set signified by the term, or b. inappropriate exclusion of some instances from that set. Thus the definition should not be too general or too specific.