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I am trying to write a sentence in English, even though it is not my native language. So I would like to know if it is possible to write

Those are virtual work and fun environments.

in order to comunicate both the following ideas at the same time:

The first is a virtual work environment, the other is a virtual fun environment.

Do the proposed sentences have meaning in English? Is the first sentence correct?

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One question: What exactly do you mean by saying virtual work environment and virtual fun environment? Could you describe the two? –  Daniel Sep 13 '11 at 17:14
    
@drɱ65 δ - Since my native language is not English, it is hard for me to explain what are both the virtual work environment and the virtual fun environment. Sorry. P.S.: For this reason I have not immediately responded to your comment. –  user502052 Sep 13 '11 at 17:28
    
That's OK; it's just that I think there might be a better way to describe what you mean. I hope I answered your main question, though! –  Daniel Sep 13 '11 at 17:30
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4 Answers 4

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Both sentences are correct grammatically and have meanings, but the meanings are different: the first would usually mean that all referenced environments are for both work and fun. It doesn't specify that only one virtual environment is for work, and only the other is for fun. So the first is not sufficient to communicate what you have in the second.

The second is therefore better for what you're trying to say. You could put in one instead of the first, though, if they are not meant to be in any order:

One is a virtual work environment; the other is a virtual fun environment.

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I should use as few words as possible by keeping the meaning. –  user502052 Sep 13 '11 at 17:09
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You can use the word respectively. Your example in particular would become for example:

... a virtual work and a fun environment respectively.

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This will work, but "respectively" would need to follow some kind of referents, like this: "We created two environments called VW and VF, a virtual work and a fun environment respectively." –  JeffSahol Sep 13 '11 at 19:12
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I would propose not combining the two in quite that way... I'm assuming by virtual you mean offsite (or disconnected)...

I would propose something like:

Those virtual environments are fun.

or (to flower it up a little more)

Those virtual environments have a reputation for being fun.

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Maybe I was not clear in the question, but I do not mean that for which you wrote the answer. The meaning is that understood by @drɱ65 δ. –  user502052 Sep 13 '11 at 17:18
    
ah, ok... I missed the mark then... –  Rikon Sep 13 '11 at 17:21
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Do not worry. Thanks anyway. –  user502052 Sep 13 '11 at 17:26
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This is about as short as I can make it:

Those are virtual environments: one for work, one for fun.

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