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I'm having trouble discerning how to name an auxiliary function/button in our software. The first already exists and essentially performs a one-click automatic calculation. The need is for a secondary function with an intuitive enough name to distinguish the two. The second is like a "semi-automatic" calculation that requires user input via a prompt, but is very much doing similar calculations as the automatic function.

One possible metaphor to this is I have a function to calculate prime numbers. Auto will give me every result between 0-1000 with no user input, just one click and list them out.

I have a related function that does the same thing, but with some inputs like skip numbers less than x, or exclude numbers that contain y, etc. It's click the button to display a prompt, then OK to execute the calculation to show the results.

The question again is how can I name the secondary, non-automatic function? My main function might be named "Auto Generate" and I was thinking something like "Generate..." with the dots suggesting there is more input required.

  • Rather than using the auto concept (as both are auto) maybe you could use a term that transmits that the user can apply custom filters: simple vs complex or default vs customized. – Alvaro May 1 '17 at 17:01
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I usually try to avoid giving "teach a man to fish" answers, but in this case it seems that without knowing the actual details it would be very hard to nail the best term, while it might be pretty easy for you to be able to get to it by yourself. Thesaurus.com is an indispensable tool for these naming problems. Just think of a few words which are generally in the same direction as what you're looking for, feed them into the thesaurus and start clicking. You're guaranteed to have an excellent shortlist within 10 minutes. Better yet, ask a few people to describe the new button in their own words, so you can get more varied points of departure.

Personally I'd start off with manual, custom, limited, anchor, controlled, supervised, stuff like that.

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From the description, it sounds like "Auto-Generate" and "Custom" would be your best bet for the two buttons. Even "Filter" or "Define" might also work, since you're filtering and / or defining an output that differs from the original auto-generated one.

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