Ever played a game called VISH?
Everybody is given the same word, everybody has a dictionary.
Look up the word, pick a salient definitional word, then look
that one up, etc.
First person that gets a definition that uses the original word
wins, having completed a "vicious circle".
It is an indication of another usage that may be common but again, not
necessarily entirely correct (or, perhaps, "precise" would be another
way to characterize it).
Common English and technical aren't the same; I'm simply pointing out
the underlying technically-based difference between the two.
And, yes, I would still contend that the use of "condensation" in place
of "condensate" is, in fact, incorrect however common it might be in
Incorrect usage does enter daily speech but even institutionalized by
dictionaries written for that purpose that reflect such doesn't actually
change the underlying meaning; it simply adds an air of legitimacy that
fosters incorrect and imprecise communication.
(And yes, I'll agree I'm an old fogey and I'm adept at tilting at
windmills as a sidelight... :) )
The "difference" is that condensation (as it relates to a wet storm
door) is defined as both the process by which matter transitions from
a gas (or vapor) phase into a liquid phase *and* the product of that
process, while condensate is defined as the product only, not the
In other words, both of these are correct:
Condensation caused condensation to appear on the storm door.
Condensation caused condensate to appear on the storm door.
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