Alexa ModeController.mode Syntax

I read through the documentation but still confused by the syntax for supportedModes. The examples given:

supportedModes=“0=Cold:Cool,1=Warm,2=Hot”
supportedModes=“Normal=:Cottons,Whites”
supportedModes="Normal=Normal:Cottons,Whites=Whites

Does anyone have a simpler explanation as when to use = , and : ?

For a given mode, “=” sets the OH states (left side) to a list of friendly names (right side) which are delimited by “:”

The first example would be suited for a Number item while the other two for a String item. The second example you provided is just a contracted version of the third example. Basically, if the OH state is also used as one of the friendly names, it can be omitted. So Normal=:Cottons is just a contraction for Normal=Normal:Cottons. Similarly, an OH state by itself indicates that it should be used as friendly name, thus Whites is the contraction for Whites=Whites.