Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.
  1. I have redefined the size and location of the windows to be opened.
  2. I have redefined the size and location of windows to be opened.

Which one is correct?

share|improve this question
2  
"the" is many times skipped in the daily-spoken informal language (sometimes things are not stressed intentionally), but always used to refer to a specific noun though. You should decide how you want to stress the size, the location and the group of windows that you mention. "the" may be used with non-count nouns or omitted completely. Example: I love (the) cold weather. "the" is a definite article (an article is similar an adjective) which is used to refer to a specific noun or a particular member(s) of a group. "a/an" are called the indefinite articles. –  Fr0zenFyr May 7 '12 at 5:32
    
Thanks, If I have this sentence: I have redefined the size and location of the windows of the program to be executed. you see there have three definite articles 'the' in just one sentence, is it still correct without grammar issues? or a little bit wordy? –  Jammy C.c May 7 '12 at 15:27
    
That is alright. For example, consider this sentence: "The greatest warrior in the entire history of the mankind is the king of ____". Did you notice the legitimate use of the "the" in the sentence, it was 4 times. However, "the" in the may be pronounced as [dee] or as [da], both have a different measure of emphasis on the object (noun) that follows. "The" generally indicates one specific instance of the object mentioned. –  Fr0zenFyr May 7 '12 at 20:30
    
I will re-phrase your sentence in this way: "I have redefined the size and location of the windows of program to be executed." Or "I have redefined the size and location of windows of the program to be executed."Did you notice the difference? Try to explain if you find any difference in the meaning. ;) –  Fr0zenFyr May 7 '12 at 20:31
    
Thanks, "I have redefined the size and location of the windows of program to be executed." this emphasize the particular window, the program may potentially have more than one windows but we indicate the specific one, there the program was a generic program. "I have redefined the size and location of windows of the program to be executed.", the program is the particular one, the window is generic window of the program. –  Jammy C.c May 8 '12 at 2:59
show 2 more comments

3 Answers 3

Sentence 1 implies, or even emphasises, that as well as the windows that are to be opened, thare are some other windows (not to be opened). If that is indeed the case, this form would be preferable.

Sentence 2 carries no such implication, so if there are also some windows without redefined sizes and locations, the reader may at first glance wonder why that is so.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Neither is more correct, nor more proper. In both cases, there are windows – some of which need to be opened – and both the size and location of those windows have been redefined. In that context, the article the doesn't alter the meaning of the sentence. But that wouldn't necessarily always hold true. Consider:

Sentence 1: Hot weather is the bane of runners.

Sentence 2: Hot weather is the bane of the runners.

In this case, "the runners" seems more restrictive than "runners." So, Sentence 2 might be used to talk about the runners of a particular race on a hot day (essentially saying, "The runners in this race are having problems with today's hot weather"), whereas Sentence 1 might be used to talk about runners in general (such as in this context: "Now that summer is here, the hot weather will make it harder for runners to train").

In your example, though, the domain is very limited (windows on a computer screen), so the insertion or omission of the word the doesn't seem to alter the meaning in any significant way.

share|improve this answer
    
Many thanks for your reply, If I have this sentence: I have redefined the size and location of the windows of the program to be executed. you see there have three definite articles 'the' in just one sentence, is it still correct without grammar issues? or a little bit wordy? –  Jammy C.c May 7 '12 at 15:24
add comment

Yes, "I have redefined size and location of windows of the program to be executed" is perfectly alright. You are talking of a particular program's windows here, I guess that's what u wanted. Each "the" changes the meaning of the sentence, no grammar issues though.

Posted as an answer because we don't want to flood the question with comments instead of answers. Do we? Cheers!!

share|improve this answer
    
Re "we don't want to flood the question with comments", consider deleting your earlier comments and placing relevant content in your answer. –  jwpat7 May 8 '12 at 17:08
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.