The prefix pre- means, roughly speaking, before, while post- means after. Is there a prefix that means in the middle of?
To help give some context, I’ve been asked to do a “postmortem” on a project that hasn’t even completed yet and I’m feeling a bit snarky about it, but titling it “in-the-middle-of-mortem” just doesn’t quite have the right ring to it, you know?
I realise true meanings get a bit twisted, and that’s OK as long as everyone knows what everybody means, but I’ve still got to say…
Postmortem means after death - I would normally reserve the use of that term for analysis or examination of something that has undergone a demise of some kind - either because it failed, or because it was shut down intentionally.
That being the case, midmortem, if anything, means an analysis performed during the demise of something.
“In-” is used in the sense of “in the middle of”, at least in some mathematical and linguistic terminology (e.g., infix, infix notation). “Mid-” means, according to Merriam–Webster, “being the part in the middle or midst”.
You obviously haven’t see the last scene of a Shakespearean tragedy, or of a tragic grand opera, where the process of death takes several speeches or a long aria. And in reality there’s often no sharp dividing line between “mostly alive” and “mostly dead”. But I agree that a postmortem done before the death of a prject should be a premortem.
It’s actually a school project due next week. For reasons known only to those running this course, they want the documentation(including the “postmortem” analysis of what went wrong and what went right) before we even finish coding. Madness.