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Thread: need comments

  1. #1
    Taka is offline Senior Member
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    Default need comments

    (1) Without a computer, a lot of people nowadays feel uneasy, irritated, which are symptoms of addiction.

    (2) With their computer disconnected, a lot of people nowadays feel uneasy, irritated, which are symptoms of addiction.

    (3 ) Without using a computer, a lot of people nowadays feel uneasy, irritated, which are symptoms of addiction.


    (3) is the sentence written by a friend of mine, and he is asking me if it works or not. IMO, (3) is weird but I cannot explain well why; it just doesn't feel right.

    Well, maybe I'm wrong and there is nothing wrong in the sentence (3) . If so, then that's fine.

    Could anybody tell me if it works or not, and if not, then why?

  2. #2
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    I don't like it either. "Without using a computer" looks like "I don't/didn't even need a computer".

    FRC

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    Quote Originally Posted by Francois
    I don't like it either. "Without using a computer" looks like "I don't/didn't even need a computer".

    FRC
    How about "without access to a computer ..."?

  4. #4
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    'Access' works, but the original sentence doesn't- I'd use 'access'or 1.

  5. #5
    Taka is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    'Access' works, but the original sentence doesn't- I'd use 'access'or 1.
    tdol, could you tell me why "using" in "Without using a computer, a lot of people nowadays feel uneasy..." doesn't work? The same reason as Francois's?

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    Default Re: need comments

    Quote Originally Posted by Taka
    (3) Without using a computer, a lot of people nowadays feel uneasy, irritated, which is are symptoms of addiction.
    It's a dangling participle.

    First, the modifying phrase 'Without using' expresses, Don't use/Try not to use. It's imperative; Its subject is (you):

    Without (you) using a computer, type this document.
    Type this document without (you) using a computer.
    ==>(You) Don't use a computer to type this document.
    ==>(You) Try not to use a computer to type this document.

    Second, the subject of 'Without (you) using' and the subject of 'people feel uneasy' are not coreferential; they are not one and the same:

    Without (you) using a computer, people feel uneasy. (Odd)
    People feel uneasy without (you) using a computer. (Odd)
    ==> (You) Don't use a computer; people feel uneasy. (Odd)
    ==>(You) Try not to use a computer; people feel uneasy. (Odd)

    In short, in A. the subjects agree, whereas in B. the subjects don't agree.

    A. Without (you) using your hands, (you) pick up this pencil. :D
    B. Without (you) using a computer, people feel uneasy. :(

    Dangling Participle
    When a modifier improperly modifies something, it is called a dangling participle.

    Repair Strategy: Replace the participle with a non-participle nominal.

    EX: Without the use of a computer, poeple feel uneasy.
    EX: Without access to a computer, people feel uneasy.

    All the best, :D

  7. #7
    Taka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: need comments

    Quote Originally Posted by Casiopea
    First, the modifying phrase 'Without using' expresses, Don't use/Try not to use. It's imperative; Its subject is (you):
    I disagree.

    (Examples)

    Mike Craig uses Tween as a surfactant to allow the coating to penetrate. Without using it, he says that the coating is uneven.

    http://www.apug.org/forums/archive/t-8738.html

    He had a closed umbrella in his hand. He walked back through the rain without using it.

    http://www.reppe.com/Dispatch_stories/VA_Pentagon.htm


    The subjects of "using"s above are not (you).

  8. #8
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    Default Re: need comments

    Quote Originally Posted by Taka
    Mike Craig uses Tween as a surfactant to allow the coating to penetrate. Without using it, he says that the coating is uneven.

    He had a closed umbrella in his hand. He walked back through the rain without using it.
    Given that context, yes.

    Without him using it, he says/he walked.... (OK; Coreferential)

    Now try the original context:

    1. Without them using it, people feel uneasy. (Not OK)
    2. People feel uneasy without them using it. (Not OK)

    The subjects in 1. and 2., respectively, are not coreferential.

    Nonetheless you brought up a good point. Thank you. :D Let's try using the same verb category (i.e., stative verbs):

    Without being able to use it, people feel uneasy. (OK)

    Seems to me that the verbs as well as the subjects have to agree in kind.

    All the best, :D

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    I don't agree with (or haven't understood) the imperative argument and the implicit 'you' either, but I don't think the "Mike Craig..." sentence is correct. The umbrella one is fine.

    FRC

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    Quote Originally Posted by Francois
    I don't agree with (or haven't understood) the imperative argument and the implicit 'you' either, but I don't think the "Mike Craig..." sentence is correct. The umbrella one is fine.

    FRC
    Why do you feel the Mike Craig sentence is incorrect? It's just topicalized:

    Mike Craig uses Tween as a surfactant to allow the coating to penetrate. Without using it, he says that the coating is uneven.
    He says that the coating is uneven without using it.

    All the best, :D

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