Note: The idea for this article originated from a recent discussion I had with Steve Westmoreland of Bonneville Power Authority, Portland, Oregon, and my brother-in-law, Dr. David Glass, Lyme, New Hampshire.

Organizations have always struggled with the confusion that arises when various parts of the organization use different names to identify the same item. For example, production control may call an item a widget. Marketing may call it the Blue Bomber, and sales speaks of it as the secret weapon. To the accounting department, it is pq-9981-qt. It seems that everyone is speaking a different language.

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