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holistic

English translation: "fully integrated" (might be better in 2002)

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
English term or phrase:"holistic" (to describe the design of complex products)
English translation:"fully integrated" (might be better in 2002)
Entered by: Dan McCrosky
Options:
- Contribute to this entry
- Include in personal glossary

10:14 Aug 11, 2002
English to English translations [PRO]
Marketing / product design
English term or phrase: holistic
Is the marketing world ready for "holistic"?

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate® Dictionary writes:

"holistic: relating to or concerned with wholes or with complete systems rather than with the analysis of, treatment of, or dissection into parts"

NODE – The New Oxford Dictionary of English says:

"holistic: characterized by understanding the parts of something to be intimately interconnected and explicable only by reference to the whole"

Sorry, I cannot tell you exactly what sort of product it is, but I'm writing advertising copy about an all-embracing / complete / integral / comprehensive / integrated / coordinated product design where all the components of a somewhat complex product are the sons of the whole and the whole is the sum of all its parts. Even the integrations are integrated within the integral design. The gizmo components know what the whatsit parts are doing and all whatsits are coordinated with doodeliwop temperature as well as with thing-a-ma-bob selection and doodeliwop temperature controls the maximum whatchamacallit density.

The customer loves buzzwords.

The phrase "holistic product design" draws 13 Google worldwide hits:

http://www.google.de/search?q="holistic product design"&ie=U...

including some pretty highfalutin' subjects. One IHT article on Nordic design does use the phrase "holistic product design" talk about the design of mobile phones though:

http://www.iht.com/articles/52015.html

Play Incorporated even uses "holistic product design" to talk about DVDs and games.

I am used to seeing "holistic" used in philosophical, medical, software systems, environmental, and business management writing, but I feel I might be going too far using the term "holistic" to describe such a mundane concept as the design of medium-complex, everyday products like a video camera, dishwasher or CD player.

Do you think I can get away with writing about "holistic dishwasher design" or should I stick with something safer, but less buzzy, like "comprehensive", "integrated" or "coordinated"????????

TIA

Dan
Dan McCrosky
Local time: 02:20
Your concern is well justified.
Explanation:
"Holistic," regardless of dictionary definitions, seems to be used in contexts where "whloe" approaches "wholesome" in its connotations. The products you mentioned are typically not the kinds that merit term with such connotations. I would go for one of the many terms you cited above, especially "integrated." You can enhance it by a qualifier: "highly integrated," "fully integrated," "tightly integrated," etc.

You can also use the term "whole" somewhere in the text, as in "the entire system works as a fully integrated whole." The words "entire," "system," "fully integrated," and "whole" will drive home the point you are trying to make without using a term, like "holistic" that may be considered a stretch.

Fuad
Selected response from:

Fuad Yahya
Grading comment
There were too many of you who expressed doubts, so I chickened out and used "fully integrated". Fuad first suggested "fully integrated", but I am glad John and Fuad cleared up the "wholesome" bit. IMO, there is no more connection between "wholesome" and "holistic" than between "holy" and "holey" and "wholly".

I liked Chris's answer and will keep it and airmailrpl's jazzy "wholistic" in mind for other situations and different customers.

Thanks for your help everyone.

Dan

4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
5 +6fully integratedChris Rowson
5 +3Your concern is well justified.Fuad Yahya
5since it is for advertising copy why not use 'wholistic'
airmailrpl
1 +4steer clearSam D
4end-to-end
Alison Schwitzgebel
4holistic - suggests higher intelligencexxxsergey
4global
swisstell
3integratedKlaus Dorn


  

Answers


4 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
end-to-end


Explanation:
or "all-embracing"

might also work well.....

HTH

Alison

Alison Schwitzgebel
France
Local time: 02:20
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in pair: 92
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7 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 1/5Answerer confidence 1/5 peer agreement (net): +4
steer clear


Explanation:
A personal response: I'd feel hostile to a company/product which took over and muddied up a word like "holistic" for its own ends when other perfectly adequate words exist to express a concept. "Integrated" sounds fine to me; however, being steeped in the context, you're doubtless better placed than I am to decide on the best alternative.

Sam D
Local time: 01:20
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  xxxLia Fail: Yes, just becuase it is used on the Internet doesn't in fact mean that it is acceptable
2 hrs
  -> Thanks, Siulach

agree  Libero_Lang_Lab: yes, the phrase "pretentious bollocks" springs to mind
7 hrs
  -> Thanks Dan - you took the words right out of my mouth!

agree  jerrie: Intergrated...definitely not holistic
8 hrs
  -> Thanks Jerrie

agree  John Kinory: Dan is too polite (well, he is a nice person) - pretentious bollocks is putting it mildly. I'd boycott the company. Siulach is also right, as is Jerrie.
15 hrs
  -> Thanks John
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8 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
integrated


Explanation:
I think would still be my favourite...it's kind of buzzy and gives a technical impression

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2002-08-11 10:31:15 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

I tried a search on Wordnet (to no avail), but I also tried a EN-GE-EN translation and that also came up with integrated being the closest equivalent

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2002-08-11 10:33:03 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

ah, Wordnet did show something:

holistic used as an adjective is very rare (polysemy count = 1)



Klaus Dorn
Local time: 03:20
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in pair: 35

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  John Kinory: Holistic medicine, where it is an adjective, is a very common term indeed in the UK.
15 hrs
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16 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +3
Your concern is well justified.


Explanation:
"Holistic," regardless of dictionary definitions, seems to be used in contexts where "whloe" approaches "wholesome" in its connotations. The products you mentioned are typically not the kinds that merit term with such connotations. I would go for one of the many terms you cited above, especially "integrated." You can enhance it by a qualifier: "highly integrated," "fully integrated," "tightly integrated," etc.

You can also use the term "whole" somewhere in the text, as in "the entire system works as a fully integrated whole." The words "entire," "system," "fully integrated," and "whole" will drive home the point you are trying to make without using a term, like "holistic" that may be considered a stretch.

Fuad

Fuad Yahya
Native speaker of: Native in ArabicArabic, Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 893
Grading comment
There were too many of you who expressed doubts, so I chickened out and used "fully integrated". Fuad first suggested "fully integrated", but I am glad John and Fuad cleared up the "wholesome" bit. IMO, there is no more connection between "wholesome" and "holistic" than between "holy" and "holey" and "wholly".

I liked Chris's answer and will keep it and airmailrpl's jazzy "wholistic" in mind for other situations and different customers.

Thanks for your help everyone.

Dan

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Irene Chernenko: With the idea that "holistic" connotes "wholesome".
7 mins

agree  John Kinory: I am not sure that it means wholesome: some users may have hijacked it to 'mean' that (e.g. in New Age 'therapy'), but this is unjustified extension from the idea of treating the WHOLE body-mind-soul.
15 hrs
  -> I hope I did not imply endorsing the definition of "holistic" as "wholesome." I wrote, "...seems to be used in contexts where "whloe" approaches "wholesome" in its connotations." For that reason, I preferred "highly integrated" or a similar expression.

agree  Herman Vilella: Greek root meaning "all" or "whole" (memo aid: wholistic?)
5 days
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43 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +6
fully integrated


Explanation:
I would seriously consider using "holistic", on the grounds that what you describe quite simply is holistic, and I accordingly considered saying so here. Till I got to your "holistic washing machine design", where it seems laughable, and decided against it. But what you describe is more than just integrated, and I would describe it as above.

The basis for my assessment includes over 20 years in IT, including design of highly integrated, advanced systems, plus that wonderful book "Gödel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid", from which I learnt the word "holistic".

Chris Rowson
Local time: 02:20
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 243

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Parrot: nice!
55 mins
  -> Thank you :-)

agree  Andrea Bullrich
3 hrs

agree  Rafa Lombardino
3 hrs

agree  Libero_Lang_Lab
7 hrs

agree  Sue Crocker
9 hrs

agree  Piotr Kurek
20 hrs
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50 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
global


Explanation:
universal, whole

is what is means too

swisstell
Italy
Local time: 02:20
Native speaker of: German
PRO pts in pair: 170
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8 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
holistic - suggests higher intelligence


Explanation:
which can see how parts are interconnected and may be even govern them, therefore parts and even whole designs can't be holistic in themselves yet , may be until the artificial intelligence is developed to the extent that it is able to see the whole, i.e. recognise itself as a being etc.
holistic medicine is fine, because it is concocted by humans.
a holistic approach to education / product design (even if it's a washing machine) is fine too, because the higher intelligence (supposedly) was engaged again - a human mind ... - just a thought

xxxsergey
Local time: 01:20
PRO pts in pair: 84
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20 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
since it is for advertising copy why not use 'wholistic'


Explanation:
Is the marketing world ready for "holistic"? no but it may be ready for..
"wholistic"


The Wholistic Pet-
... . The Wholistic Pet™ PO Box 1107 Merrimack, NH 03054-1107 1-888-ILASAND
(452-7263) Fax: (603) 472-3093 info@thewholisticpet.com. ...
Descrição: Products for all your pets, whether it's a dog, cat, bird or horse.
Categoria: Shopping > Pets
www.thewholisticpet.com/


Wholistic Career Home Page
"Who Develops the Career Developer?" The Wholistic Development Institute
Does! *call: 416-738-4212 or 519-438-8284 CUSTOMIZED WORKSHOP ...
Descrição: Training course to assist in becoming a wholistic counsellor.
Categoria: Business > Training and Schools > Communications
www.mirror.org/wcci/

Wholistic World Vision-
Welcome to Wholistic World Vision. A Global Communications Network ... WHAT
IS WHOLISTIC WORLD VISION. CHARTER. 'Wholistic World Vision was ...
globalvisions.org/cl/wwv/


AWARE (Alliance for Wholistic Arts, Resouces, and Edcuation)-
... The mission and purpose of the Alliance for Wholistic Arts ... 2001-2002 Alliance
for Wholistic Arts, Resouces, and Edcuation, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Descrição: AWARE is dedicated to support personal and global health, wholeness, and well being.
Categoria: Regional > North America > ... > Localities > F > Flagstaff > Society and Culture
www.wholistic-health.org/


WCN Home Page-
The WCN is a worldwide community that provides educational and networking services to encourage the adoption of wholistic values, practices, and lifestyles. ...
www.wholcom.net/

airmailrpl
Brazil
Local time: 21:20
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in PortuguesePortuguese
PRO pts in pair: 1140
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