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But this was more than ten years ago now, and since then I haven’t given the matter enough thought obviously, as I defaulted back to confusing the two classes of terms, just as I used to.Matt pointed out that truncation selection is a form of hard selection.

This produces a genetic block of highly reduced diversity since the hard selective sweep increases the frequency of so many variants which are associated with the advantageous one, and may drive to extinction most other competitive variants.

When I was talking to Matt Hahn I made a pretty stupid semantic flub, confusing “soft selection” with “soft sweeps.” Matt pointed out that soft/hard selection were terms more appropriate to quantitative genetics rather than population genomics.

His viewpoint is defensible, though going back into the literature on soft/selection, e.g., Soft and hard selection revisited, the main thinkers pushing the idea were population geneticists who were also considering ecological questions.* The strange thing is that I had already known the definitions of hard and soft selection on some level because I had read about them as I was getting confused with hard and soft sweeps!

Going back to the conversation I had with Matt the reason semantics is important is that terms in population genetics are informationally rich, and lead you down a rabbit-hole of inferences.

If population genetics is a toolkit for decomposing reality, then you need to have your tools well categorized and organized. * There are two somewhat related definitions of soft/hard selection.

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