reiterate, -tion; iterate, -tion.
It is perhaps not too literalistic to use “iterate” in the sense “to repeat,” and “reiterate” in the sense “to repeat a second time [i.e., to state a third time].” But the distinction is observed by only the most punctilious writers, “reiterate” being the usual term in either sense.
Since an “iteration” repeats a former event, the term can’t logically apply to the first anything — e.g.:
o “Allison’s first iteration [read 'appearance'] in 1989 drenched Houston. It returned last year as a system that caused historic destruction in the nation’s fourth-largest city, earning retirement as an Atlantic storm name.” “Voter Turnout, Elections Top NAACP Agenda,” Sun-Sentinel (Ft. Lauderdale), 7 July 2002, at A3.
o “Its first iteration [read 'version'], in 1947, was such a disaster that it had to be redrawn two years later — and was still being amended 37 years after that.” Fred Hiatt, “Operation Tough: Revamping Government,” Newsday (N.Y.), 16 July 2002, at A25.
o “Many of the most daring are being commissioned by an emerging online force — such corporate giants as Nestle USA, Pepsi, Coca-Cola and General Motors that sat out the first iteration [read 'generation'] of Web advertising while the rest of the nation went dot-com crazy.” Doug Bedell, “On the Web, in Your Face,” Dallas Morning News, 25 July 2002, at A1.
Language-Change Index — “first iteration”* for “first version,” etc.: Stage 1.
Quotation of the Day: “Writing, or at least writing as I do it, is impossible without an exhilarating sense of freedom that carries author and reader to unexpected places. For both, it is a solitary journey of discovery, unique each time it is made. Its very substance is emotion.” Sherwin B. Nuland, “The Uncertain Art,” Am. Scholar, Winter 2001, at 129, 129.
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