Clone or Duplicate? What should be the right label?

7 Jan 2011 - 4:20am
3 years ago
13 replies
1823 reads
smkarmarkar
2009

Hi fellow designers,

I have a grid that shows a list of schedules and user can then duplicate a schedule by clicking on a button (just above the grid) and make necessary changes. I want to call this button "Duplicate" and my dev team thinks this is "Clone".

I have seen the term 'Duplicate' getting used more common these days but is there any other logical reason why we should use 'Duplicate' and not 'Clone' or vice versa?

 

Thanks for your help,
Sandeep

Comments

7 Jan 2011 - 4:40am
mprove
2004

Hi Sandeep,

I work in the area of desktop virtualization. 'Cloning' is used to create new virtual machines from a common template. The dependency and link to the original machine is preserved to optimize for storage use. A copy or duplicate of a virtual machine creates am independent stand-alone virtual machine. The template or original can be deleted without any effect on the copy.

In any case I would consider  to use the less technical term. Hence I prefer 'duplicate' as long as there is no better reason to use 'clone'. The mere opinion of the engineers is no such reason.

cheers,
Matthias  http://blogs.sun.com/mprove

7 Jan 2011 - 5:11am
smkarmarkar
2009

 

Hi Matthias,

Thanks for your comments. Your example is interesting. Similarly, I remember in CorelDraw there used to be a command called clone where the object is duplicated and the connection with the original objects is preserved.

I too consider using Duplicate but wanted to know logical reasons of not using clone.

Sandeep

 

7 Jan 2011 - 4:53am
ruudt
2008

I think duplicate is the best option. For me, a clone implies an exact copy of the item that can't be modified or changed. Duplicates can be changed and still be duplicates.

7 Jan 2011 - 5:14am
smkarmarkar
2009

Ruud, I wonder if most of the users feel the same about these terms. For me duplicate is very simple term too and thats why I would like to use it.

7 Jan 2011 - 5:48am
ruudt
2008

I don't really know (and would be very interested in what others think of it). This how both words feel for me. I must say though: I'm dutch and my English is far from perfect :-).

7 Jan 2011 - 11:34am
bojcampbell
2010

We are using the term "Clone" mainly because it's an industry standard term. Websters defines a duplicate as an exact copy and a clone as an imitation. When I hear the term duplicate I can't help but think of making duplicates of paper copies back in the day. Clone feels more futuristic and forward. Just my take.

10 Jan 2011 - 10:10am
Kelly Snow
2006

Clone reminds me of Dolly the sheep and genetics.
It depends if you can modify the duplicated/cloned record. Duplicate feels right if you are making a copy then adjusting from there. Clone feels right if you can't modify it in any way.



On Fri, Jan 7, 2011 at 9:32 AM, bojcampbell <bo.campbell@verizon.net> wrote:

We are using the term "Clone" mainly because it's an industry standard term. Websters defines a duplicate as an exact copy and a clone as an imitation. When I hear the term duplicate I can't help but think of making duplicates of paper copies back in the day. Clone feels more futuristic and forward. Just my take.

9 Jan 2011 - 1:05pm
Paul Eisen
2007

Sandeep, who are the users? Unless they are mainly technically savvy, it's probably not even worth considering the term "Clone".

10 Jan 2011 - 10:03am
sysscore
2007

I use the term "Duplicate" in our software. In my option, "Duplicate" is a better none technical term. Other big software products (e.g. Open office, Adobe) use also this term.

 

10 Jan 2011 - 10:10am
Andante
2008

I see an opportunity for some user testing.
What your users have to say? Your dev team will call it the way they understand the action, the same way you do. But what is the term used by your end-users? What is the proper business term that represents that action?
My 0.02 centsE

On Fri, Jan 7, 2011 at 3:25 AM, smkarmarkar <sandeep.karmarkar@gmail.com> wrote:

Hi fellow designers,

I have a grid that shows lists of schedules and user can then duplicate a schedule by clicking on a button (just above the grid) and make necessary changes. I want to call this button "Duplicate" and my dev team thinks this is "Clone".

I have seen the term 'Duplicate' getting used more common these days but is there any other logical reason why we should use 'Duplicate' and not 'Clone' or vice versa?

 

Thanks for your help,
Sandeep

(((
10 Jan 2011 - 7:09pm
Dave Malouf
2005

"copy"?

10 Jan 2011 - 8:39pm
mdostert
2010

I am wondering if this is too much jargon for the useers. I wonder if make a duplicate is good enough? I think if we let programmers and developers drive the naming conventions for user interfaces we are missing the goal of being user centric. You could easily test the function informally with clone and duplicate and see what gets better results. Since you often have to have a rational or data to support your choices anyways.

Also, I would ask, whose role does naming conventions for the users fall into?

10 Jan 2011 - 8:41pm
mdostert
2010

Oopss. I duplicated, or cloned! my comments. Sorry ;)

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