This tag is for questions about the differences in the meaning of two words.

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1answer
3k views

“Can not” vs. “cannot” [duplicate]

Is there a difference in meaning and/or connotation between "can not" and "cannot"? I have read and seen both used interchangeably, but I know people who argue for a slight difference in meaning. ...
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2answers
875 views

“What does it mean?” vs. “What does that mean?” — what's the difference?

I tried to find an answer to this question. But no luck. Can somebody explain it to me? An American friend of mine said, "I've never heard about 'What does it mean?', I've always used 'What does that ...
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2answers
2k views

Difference between “have had” and “having”

What is the difference between the following two sentences? I have had a headache since this morning. I am having a headache since this morning.
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3answers
398 views

“Metering” vs “measuring”

I am now working on a technical concept of measuring of some data and I often see terms measuring and metering. My understanding is that with a meter I measure. But what is metering? And how does it ...
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5answers
9k views

Difference in meaning: “would have had to be” vs “would have had to have been”

Being a non native speaker, I cannot spot the difference here: He would have had to have been there. He would have had to be there. The only thing that comes to my mind is that in the first case, ...
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4answers
356 views

Difference between “delight” and “delightful” [closed]

I am wondering if there is really a difference between delight and delightful. I would like to make a title for a French cooking app and was thinking of this: MyApp - Homemade delightful French ...
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2answers
776 views

Medical or medicinal? [duplicate]

I am not an English native. I am working in the field of medicinal plants. I like to know why we don't use term "medical plants"? What is the difference between them?
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1answer
7k views

“Listen to music” vs. “listen to the music”

English is not my mother tongue. I once came across information that listening to music and listening to the music mean something different. Listening to the music would mean you put whole heart into ...
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1answer
4k views

What is the difference between “left/right side” and “left/right-hand side”?

This question arose in the context of referring to locations in a figure, e.g.: A dot is added to the left(-hand) side of the diagram. What is the difference in meaning (if there is one)? What ...
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2answers
421 views

Disdainful pity…?

My question stems from a conversation on sympathy and pity. My girlfriend and I agreed that sympathy is feeling for someone, but without taking action or desiring to take action. Pity, then, overlaps ...
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3answers
1k views

“Endorse” vs. “condone”

What is the difference in meaning/connotation between the two words? Is endorse "stronger", more positive? Also, endorse is to endorsement as condone is to what? Is there a noun counterpart?
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2answers
854 views

“Don't know what the name is” vs. “Don't know what it's called”

What is the difference between saying: A: Which meal do you want, Sir? B: Number 4. I don't know what the name is. A: Which meal do you want, Sir? B: Number 4. I don't know what it's ...
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1answer
673 views

What's the difference between “that will be $200” and “that would be $200”?

When you are negotiating prices with your customer, you might say "that's $200," "that'll be $200," or "that would be $200." Are there any differences among them?
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4answers
6k views

How do hyphens modify the meaning of “n-month-old”?

I see three different ways of hyphenating the phrase "six month old". Six-month old: A six-month old poses with a machine gun owned by supporters of the Free Syrian Army. Six-month-old: ...
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2answers
108 views

“On Mac OS X” vs. “in Mac OS X”

The NY Times uses both "on Mac OS X" and "in Mac OS X". Can someone explain which one seems more appropriate if there is no difference?
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2answers
378 views

“Compared with it”, is it correct?

Consider the following sentence: We consider a simple protocol as the base configuration and compare with it three other cases. Which one is more correct, "compare with it" or "compare it ...
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2answers
312 views

Is there any difference between these two sentences?

Is there any difference between these sentences apart from structure? The tiger is a ferocious animal. Tigers are ferocious animals.
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3answers
211 views

“When X is” or “When X will be”?

I always have a tough time with this. Suppose the following: The software will be installed when the computer is ready. versus The software will be installed when the computer will be ready. ...
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3answers
574 views

“indulger of” vs. “indulger in”

A person can indulge in something. Is he therefore an indulger of something or an indulger in something? Are both okay? If both are okay, is there any difference between these two phrases or are ...
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2answers
3k views

What are differences of meaning among device, gadget, gimmick and gizmo?

Further to today's my question about the words, 'off-the-shelf' used in Time Magazine's feature story titled 'The Best 50 Invention of The Year' (Nov. 11th 2010 Issue), I found the following sentence ...
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3answers
1k views

Difference in meaning and prononciation of urbane and urban

I encounter these two words pretty often, both orally and in writing. What is the difference between two, and how to pronounce, say in USA?
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1answer
807 views

How is “admire” used in “to admire them a great deal”?

I knew that admire can be used in phrases like "admire somebody" or "admire somebody for something", but recently I have found the following sentence in my Collins dictionary: If you emulate ...
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1answer
191 views

The difference between slick and sleek

What is the difference between the two adjectives: slick and sleek? My dictionary returns almost the same explanation for both, like smooth and glossy. Could someone explain when it would be more ...
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2answers
2k views

Difference between nouns “strip” and “stripe”

Is there a specific difference between the nouns "strip" and "stripe", especially in the context of "a strip(e) of paper"? Are both equivalent or do they carry specific meanings?
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2answers
269 views

sensible, sensitive, and sentient

Despite the apparently same meanings of the three words (which I looked up in Wiktionary), I would like to know if my interpretation is correct regarding their differences. "sensible" is used to ...
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2answers
7k views

Morrow vs. Tomorrow [closed]

What's the difference between morrow and tomorrow? Why are there two similar words for the same meaning? I noticed it in the title of a song of Michael Nyman, "Second Morrow", on Gattaca OST. ...
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1answer
173 views

Symphonic vs. symphony

Is there any clear line between a symphony and symphonic? For long, I thought that a symphony was simply a "song" played by a symphonic orchestra. Then I realized that more often than not, the ...
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3answers
5k views

What's the difference between perimeter and circumference? [closed]

What's the difference between perimeter and circumference when they mean the total length of the boundary of a two-dimensional geometric shape?
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1answer
2k views

What is the difference between teaches “at” and “in” xxx university [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Which one is more correct: “works at a university” or “works in a university”? “In college” versus “at college” versus ...
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1answer
2k views

Difference between “mad” and “angry” [closed]

Are there any differences between mad and angry and when should you use one instead of the other?
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4answers
421 views

“Existence” in English and Persian

In Persian, things "have" existence, for example To vojod dari = You have existence In English existing is not something to have, it's something to be, You exist Am I wrong in saying ...
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2answers
1k views

Difference between “leverage” and “utilize”

Sooner or later, you want to leverage Zend_Application better by creating your own resource plugins. Can leverage above be replaced by utilize?
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2answers
7k views

Difference between “yup” and “yes” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “Yes”, “Yeah”, “Yep” What is the difference between yup and yes? Most of the time I use yup instead of yes.
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2answers
157 views

“Principal” or “principle”

What is the difference between principal and principle? I frequently come across these words and get confused.
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2answers
225 views

Arrange, settle, reconcile — could these words be used before “their differences”?

Arrange, settle, reconcile — could these words be used before "their differences"? What are the differences in meaning?
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2answers
403 views

What's the difference between 'collision' and 'conflict'?

What's the difference between 'collision' and 'conflict'? In SQL language, should I say 'PK collision' or 'PK conflict'?
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2answers
3k views

Is it acceptable to say “more [adjective]” when there is already a dedicated form making “more” unnecessary (e.g. “angrier” vs. “more angry”)?

For years, it irritated me that people kept using "more [adjective]" where there were already dedicated forms making "more" unnecessary. For example, people would say "more tight" than "tighter". I ...
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2answers
42 views

What's the difference between “from the ground up” and “from scratch”? can they be used interchangeably?

What's the difference between "From the ground up" & "From scratch"? both seem to have the meaning of "from the very beginning". Can they be used interchangeably?
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2answers
79 views

Terminology vs jargon vs lexicon

Though this subject is somewhat discussed here; what are the differences? From Merriam-Webster online: Jargon: The technical terminology or characteristic idiom of a special activity or group. ...
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2answers
45 views

“archival” versus “archivable”/“archiveable”

What is the difference between archival and archivable? Archival appears to be an acceptable word among official sources, whereas archivable/archiveable does not appear to be a valid entry. Is the ...
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2answers
1k views

What is the difference between fog, mist and haze?

So, as the question says by itself: what's the context when I should use the word mist and the right context for fog? And haze?
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2answers
668 views

What is the difference between a variant and a variation?

I designed a logo for a client. He liked the idea it presented, but wanted to see alternative ways to represent its idea, so I came up with several new designs of similar concept. I now have to ...
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1answer
103 views

some time vs sometime

Is there a rule for "some time" vs "sometime"? For example: Don’t trust your memory to recall noteworthy situations and events some time (sometime) later.
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1answer
80 views

Windbag vs. demagogue

I was told that a person who delivers long speeches but no information is called a windbag. A demagogue is a political leader who represents popular tendencies (it has a negative color likewise we do ...
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2answers
356 views

What is the difference between “scream” and “shriek”?

I’m now curious because while I was updating the Wikipedia page for Onomatopoeias, I saw two different sets of sounds for scream and shriek. The sounds listed under these two sections seem to overlap. ...
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1answer
127 views

Is there a difference between “to air” and “to broadcast”?

What is the difference, if any, in the use of the verbs to air and to broadcast?
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3answers
434 views

difference between act and deed

I've been searching the internet, but have not quite found a satisfactory explanation between an act and a deed. Both seem to have kind of a meaning of something done, though through my google and ...
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2answers
163 views

“Prodigal” vs. “spendthrift”

What are the differences between the words prodigal and spendthrift? They seem to mean the same. When does one choose to use one over the other?
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1answer
114 views

what is the term when the kingdom ruler changes through an assassination

In the ancient times ,there was periods they changes the ruler of a kingdom or empire by assassination him . what do we call that? changing the king in a quick time through assassination? do we call ...
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1answer
738 views

A number off or a number of?

I am reading some technical documents and there is a list of items that make up the product. Throughout the document where there are multiple items, they are listed as 2 off, 3 off and so on. For ...