The word pedantic refers to literal minded thinking or interpretation of ideas and terminology. It's usually a highly derogatory description of that thinking or method of interpretation. Sometimes, however, the use of the word in context with a statement or concept means that the interpretation has to be made clearer, and that a pedantic approach would be better.
Examples of Pedantic:
|Derogatory usage: I'd call it pedantic to say that the phrase 'Catch a bus' means literally hunting it down and actually trapping it.|
Positive usage: I think we need to be pedantic and spell out how to use the camcorder.