There are several acronyms that are commonly used to describe tools, such as SCMS (sliding compound miter saw), RAS (radial arm saw), and ROS (random orbit sander).

Do we want to allow these as tag synonyms for the full names, and if so, were do we stop?

For example, other acronyms such as BS (band saw), TS (usually table saw), and DC (dust collector) are also commonly used on woodworking forums, but it's possible those abbreviations could be ambiguous.

2 Answers 2


I hate trying to figure out where to stop on a sliding scale.

I think that the ones like SCMS, RAS, and ROS should be created as synonyms as these are so commonly used.

The short ones that lack clarity, like BS and TS, should be left out.

If you feel something is borderline, don't create a synonym. If we find that we are repeatedly having to delete the tag and re-tag a bunch of questions, we can create a synonym at that point (or maybe ban the tag?).

  • 1
    banning tags should be last resort and only for truly off-topic stuff, for this scenario synonyms should be the answer after we get too many people trying to use the acronym Apr 5, 2015 at 0:47

I tend to find when I'm retagging something to the 'correct' tag often, that is when I will make a synonym. (unless of course the tag is ambiguous and needs the context of the question to know what it means)

  • 4
    If the synonyms get expanded to the full word tags, great. Otherwise, these initialisms, while convenient for the experienced, could become a barrier to understanding for beginners. I cite myself here; I'm still mostly a beginner and I wouldn't recognize most of them.
    – keshlam
    Apr 5, 2015 at 14:23
  • @keshlam right I guess I'm not sure exactly how the synonym works all the time
    – bowlturner Mod
    Apr 6, 2015 at 12:39

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