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Thread: Word Meaning

  1. #11
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    Re: Word Meaning

    1. Passive: The problem is not being dealt with success. (Not OK; Two objects)
    2. Active: Max is not dealing with the problem success. (Not OK; Two objects)

    I know #2 is wrong, I see it right away. #1 is a bit harder to see. I think I kind of get it now.

    Thanks.
    What is the difference between passive and active? Does it matter which one I use?
    eg.
    Passive: The problem is not being dealt with successfully.
    Active: Max is not dealing with the problem successfully.

  2. #12
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    Re: Word Meaning

    Use the passive when (a) you don't know who/what the subject is or (b) you want to emphasize the verb's object. With active sentences, the object always comes third, or there abouts:

    Subject+Verb+Object: Max hit Pat.

    With passive sentencs, the object comes first,

    Object+Verb (+Subject): Pat was hit (by Max).

    The subject (i.e., Max) is usually not stated. In fact, if the subject is more important than the object, then the active structure should be used. If the subject is not important however then the passive is used.

    My car was hit! (by someone or something. I don't know who or what hit it. Even if I knew who hit it or what hit it, I would still use the passive because I want to place focus on the object of the verb 'hit', 'My car'.

    Someone hit my car. (Active)
    My car was hit. (Passive)

    While it is very important to me that I find out the someone or the something that damaged my car, the most important thing at this very moment is my car, so I use the passive to emphasize that by placing the verb's object ('my car') at the head of the sentence, which is the most prominent position in the sentence; Now 'My car' are the first words people will hear.

    The universe was created billions of years ago. (Who created the universe? I don't know. Do you? Use the passive.)

    The problem isn't being dealt with. (The important thing here is the problem. The person who isn't dealing with the problem is of no importance to me. By using the passive, I can take focus of the person and place focus on the problem.)

    The building was erected in 1942. (The company that erected the building is of no importance to me. I use the passive to emphasize the biulding, which in an active sentence would come third and moreover would require a subject:

    Smith Construction erected the building in 1942. (Active)

    I don't care about Smith Construction, and I don't want my audience to care about Smith Construction, so I use the passive to get rid of the subject:

    The building was erected in 1942. (Passive)

    If I want to make a passing remark about the true subject, I will add a by phrase, like this,

    The building was erected in 1942 by Smith Construction.

    Note, A passive sentence has two subjects: The building is called the grammatical subject, or subject, whereas whatever comes after 'by' (i.e., Smith Construction) is called the semantic subject.

    Active: Max (subject) hit Pat (object).
    Passive: Pat (subject) was hit by Max (semantic subject).

    In short, with passive sentences, the verb's object graduates to a subject, and the subject is demoted: it's either omitted or attached to a 'by' phrase as a passing remark.

  3. #13
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    Re: Word Meaning

    Thank you very much for the comprehensive reply. You're simply the best, Casiopea. Now, I need to absorb this.
    For this picture, how did they know what to use (QuickSave or QuickSaved)?
    http://www3.telus.net/superstar/save.jpg
    Are these correct? What do these mean?
    1. Quick save.
    2. Quick saved. (If this is incorrect, how do you know?)
    Last edited by jack; 31-Oct-2004 at 21:05.

  4. #14
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    Re: Word Meaning

    Quote Originally Posted by jack
    Thank you very much for the comprehensive reply. You're simply the best, Casiopea. Now, I need to absorb this.
    You're welcome.

    Quote Originally Posted by jack
    For this picture, how did they know what to use (QuickSave or QuickSaved)?
    QuickSave (Adjective+Noun) OK What kind of save? A quick one.
    QuickSaved (Ajective+Verb) Not OK Try, QuicklySaved (Adverb+Verb) OK
    Quick save (It functions as a noun, so it should be a compound: quicksave)
    Quick saved Not OK

  5. #15
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    Re: Word Meaning

    What does 'nonwarrantied' mean?
    1. That depends on the machine you buy, the quality of its standard warranty, and the potential cost of nonwarrantied repairs.
    2. That depends on the machine you buy, the quality of its standard warranty, and the potential cost of nonwarranted repairs. (Is 'warranted' wrong here? Why?)

  6. #16
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    Re: Word Meaning

    Quote Originally Posted by jack
    What does 'nonwarrantied' mean?
    1. That depends on the machine you buy, the quality of its standard warranty, and the potential cost of nonwarrantied repairs.
    2. That depends on the machine you buy, the quality of its standard warranty, and the potential cost of nonwarranted repairs. (Is 'warranted' wrong here? Why?)
    non (i.e., not)
    warrantied (adjective, from the noun warranty)

    warrant (noun)
    warranted (adjective)

    warranty and warrant are two different words.

  7. #17
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    Re: Word Meaning

    Thanks.

  8. #18
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    Re: Word Meaning

    http://www.tomshardware.com/consumer...oundup-02.html

    1. The quality, speed, and ink cost are the same as those of the i450, so refer to the latter to get the results for this i455. (What does 'latter' mean here? What is it referring to?)

  9. #19
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    Re: Word Meaning

    Could someone help me with the post above? Thanks.

    Let's say my reservation is for 20 people. Which one do I use?

    1. I need to make reservations. (What does this mean? Does 'reservations' mean 'people' since it's plural?)
    2. I need to make a reservation. (What does this mean?)

    3. Let's say I have to make an reservation for 20 people. (Does this mean one reservation for twenty people?)
    4. Let's say I have to make reservations for 20 people. (Does this mean for each person I need to make an reservation?)
    Drizzle: noun [U, sing.] light fine rain: A light drizzle was falling. http://www1.oup.co.uk/elt/oald/images/xsym.gif The forecast for tomorrow is mist and drizzle.
    5. A light drizzle was falling. ('drizzle' is uncountable right? How come 'A' is there?)
    6. A light rain was falling. (If this is incorrect, why? #5 is correct?)

    Are these correct? What do they mean?
    6. There is a light dirzzle tommorow.
    7. There is light drizzle tommorow.
    8. There are light drizzles tommorow.
    9. There is a light rain falling.
    10.There is light rain falling.
    Last edited by jack; 02-Dec-2004 at 08:03.

  10. #20
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    Re: Word Meaning

    Quote Originally Posted by jack
    http://www.tomshardware.com/consumer...oundup-02.html

    1. The quality, speed, and ink cost are the same as those of the i450, so refer to the latter to get the results for this i455. (What does 'latter' mean here? What is it referring to?)
    latter means, last one mentioned, and former means, first one mentioned. For example,

    Are shoes and socks all you need? If you don't have the latter (i.e., socks), you can borrow some from me. If you don't have the former (i.e., shoes), you'll have to ask someone else.

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