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  1. #1
    enydia is offline Member
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    questions about times

    Hi, Teachers.

    I have several questions about times.

    1.
    What's the exact meaning of 'this street is three times wider than that one'?
    Suppose the width of 'that one' is 1 meter, what is the width of 'this stree', 3 meters, 4 meters or other numbers?

    2.
    A grammar guide says 'he is more than three times as rich as I' = 'he is three times richer than I. I doubt it very much. According to the two above-mentioned sentence, suppose 'I' have 100 dollars, how much does 'he' have respectively?

    3.
    What's the exact meaning of 'this street is four times shorter than that one'? Suppose the length of 'that one' is 100 meters, what is the length of 'this street'?

    Thanks in advance.

    Enydia

  2. #2
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Re: questions about times

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    Hi, Teachers.

    I have several questions about times.

    1.
    What's the exact meaning of 'this street is three times wider than that one'? That depends on who you ask, so there is no exact meaning!
    Suppose the width of 'that one' is 1 meter, what is the width of 'this stree', 3 meters, 4 meters or other numbers?
    Some say 3 meters and some say 4, so obviously one shouldn't say 'x times (wider)(longer)(older)(etc) than' because the meaning is not clear. One should say 'x times as (wide)(long)(old) as'. This street is 3 times as wide as that one.
    2.
    A grammar guide says 'he is more than three times as rich as I am' = 'he is three times richer than I am. They are not the same.
    'more than three times as rich as' means somewhere between three times as rich and four times as rich'. So in the example below, he has more than 300 dollars but less than 400 dollars.
    'three times richer than' is again unclear and should not be used.
    I doubt it very much. According to the two above-mentioned sentence, suppose 'I' have 100 dollars, how much does 'he' have respectively?

    3.
    What's the exact meaning of 'this street is four times shorter than that one'? Suppose the length of 'that one' is 100 meters, what is the length of 'this street'? Saying 'x times (shorter)(younger)(poorer) than' is even worse than 1. and 2. above. Don't say that.
    Say 'This street is (one quarter)(one fourth) as long as that one.', which I can only guess is what the original sentence wants to say. (25 meters)

    Thanks in advance.

    Enydia
    2006
    Last edited by 2006; 17-May-2008 at 06:56.

  3. #3
    enydia is offline Member
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    Re: questions about times

    Quote Originally Posted by 2006 View Post
    2006
    Thank you, 2006.

    I would like to ask some more question.

    Which of the following phrases is/are grammatically correct? Does they mean the same?

    (1) decrease three times
    (2) decrease by three times
    (3) decrease by a factor of three

    If they are not commonly used, please show me some other ones.

    Thanks in advance.

  4. #4
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    Re: questions about times

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    Thank you, 2006.

    I would like to ask some more questions.

    Which of the following phrases are grammatically correct? Do they mean the same?

    (1) decrease three times = decrease on 3 separate occasions

    (2) decrease by three times By itself, it doesn't mean anything. 'It will decrease by three times the original estimate.' means it will decrease by three times as much as originally thought.

    (3) decrease by a factor of three has no clear meaning

    If they are not commonly used, please show me some other ones.

    4) decrease by (one third)(33 1/3 percent) (= will be 2/3 the original amount)
    Thanks in advance.
    2006

  5. #5
    enydia is offline Member
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    Re: questions about times

    Quote Originally Posted by 2006 View Post
    2006
    Thank you for your reply.

    I'm sorry I didn't state it clearly enough. In fact, all of the words "times" I mentioned and will mention mean number by which something is multiplied or divided.

    All of the following phrases are from a grammar guide (written in Chinese):
    (1) decrease n times/n-fold;
    (2) decrease by n times;
    (3) decrease by a factor of n
    The guide says they all mean 'decrease to 1/n the original amount'. But I have some questions.

    "(1) decrease three times = decrease on 3 separate occasions"
    It seems not clear enough that using this phrase to describe division, but I really saw some examples, such as "the average survival time decreased 3-fold for Group iv and 4-fold for Group iii cells." What is the most probable meaning in such cases?

    "(2) decrease by three times By itself, it doesn't mean anything. 'It will decrease by three times the original estimate.' means it will decrease by three times as much as originally thought."
    What is the meaning of "it will decrease by three times as much as originally thought"?
    Take the following sentence for example.
    When the voltage is lower,the strength of the current decreases by three times.
    If the original strength of the current is 30, what will it be after decrease? In my opinion, there are three possibilities: -60, 20 and 10, because 30-30*3=-60, 30-30/3=20 and 30/3=10 (according to the above-mentioned grammar guide).
    In fact, I'm very uncertain of the meaning of "decrease by". Can you give me some advice?

    In the same grammar guide, there are another 4 phrases using increase:
    (4) increase to n times
    (5) increase n times/n-fold
    (6) increase by n times
    (7) increase by a factor of n
    The guide says they all mean 'increase to n times the original amount'.
    What's your comment about them?
    Can you show me some clear enough and commonly used expression?
    If any of them is not clear enough but I see it while reading, what's the most probable meaning?

    In addition, what's the meaning of "a record high increase in value of four times was reported"?

    Thank you very much in advance.

    Enydia
    Last edited by enydia; 18-May-2008 at 03:58.

  6. #6
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    Re: questions about times

    I. decrease three times, 3-fold
    For example, if the average survival time for a fruit fly is, say, 24 hours, but some flies are surviving for only 8 hours, then the average survival time is said to have decreased 3-fold; i.e., 24hrs / 8hrs = 3, or 8 goes into 24 three times.


    II. "A record high increase in value of four times [the valued amount] was reported." For example, a painting valued at 1,000,000 dollars is sold for 4,000,000 dollars; i.e., 1 x 4.

  7. #7
    enydia is offline Member
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    Re: questions about times

    Can somebody give me some help about "increase/decrease by"?

    Thank you very much in advance.

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    Re: questions about times

    I. decrease three times, 3-fold This sounds very odd and is quite unclear. One wants to ask, "decrease (3 times)(3-fold)" what amount? In the example below, it is impossible to decrease it by 72 hours. (3 times 24)

    For example, if the average survival time for a fruit fly is, say, 24 hours, but some flies are surviving for only 8 hours, then the average survival time is said to have decreased 3-fold; i.e., 24hrs / 8hrs = 3, or 8 goes into 24 three times. I would only say 'decrease to one third' or 'decrease by two thirds'. (you could also use percentages instead of fractions)


    II. "A record high increase in value to (my change) four times [the valued amount] was reported." For example, a painting valued at 1,000,000 dollars is sold for 4,000,000 dollars; i.e., 1 x 4.[/quote]

    An increase of four times should mean an increase to 5,000,000 dollars. You start with 1 M. Then you have an increase of four times the original amount (= increase of 4 M). So you should have 5 M. So I think 'increase of x times' is unclear and should not be used!


    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    hi enydia...First of all, I made the above comments about Soup's post.

    As for your last question "increase/decrease by", I would only use fractions or percentages. '(increase)(decrease) by times/fold' is too unclear, or outright meaningless ('decrease by x times/fold)'.


    Of course you can say 'increase/decrease to ---a certain number---'.

  9. #9
    enydia is offline Member
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    Re: questions about times

    Hello, Teachers.

    Sorry to bother you again.

    What's the exact meaning of the following sentences? Are they commonly used and clear enough?

    (a) The industrial output of last year in our factory was three times up on that of 1987.

    (b) The grain output in that village is four times over that of 1978.

    Thanks in advance.

    Reagards.

    Enydia *^_^*

  10. #10
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Re: questions about times

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    Hello, Teachers.

    Sorry to bother you again.

    What's the exact meaning of the following sentences? Are they commonly used and clear enough? no and no

    (a) The industrial output (of) last year in our factory was three times that of 1987.

    (b) The grain output in that village is four times that of 1978.


    Now they are clear!


    Enydia *^_^*
    2006

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