Choosing the best phrase for a particular context or meaning.

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0
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2answers
449 views

“at the cost of” vs. “at the expense of”

I usually use "at the cost of", but my editor made it "at the expense of". For example, the following sentence: The counts in Table 2 are all based on implementations that are optimized for ...
0
votes
1answer
89 views

“To the next time” vs. “Till the next time” [closed]

Could you tell me which form is correct, and why? to the next time, name till the next time, name
0
votes
0answers
33 views

Is it common to use the phrase “come with” without specifying with whom [duplicate]

We’re going to the pub. Want to come with?” I have heard this from an American colleague. Though this sounds odd to the majority of us, however, since I am not sure of the usage, I am asking how ...
2
votes
2answers
383 views

Should I use “half the time” or “half of the time”? [closed]

If I wanted to say that someone finished in 30 minutes when they had one hour to complete a given task, should I say "he did it in half the time" or "he did it in half of the time"?
0
votes
2answers
102 views

How well does my second sentence connect with the first one? [closed]

I am not sure in what category this question will fall, if any. If it needs to be altered, I will alter it. The following is the ending of a piece of writing: I will make a difference to people's ...
2
votes
3answers
110 views

sentence construction where non-restrictive clause uses a conjunction

It gave John, a new hire to the company and now a director, a good start. It gave John, a new hire to the company who is now a director, a good start. The non-restrictive clause uses "and" ...
3
votes
3answers
68 views

another way to express “not limited to”

Not limited to X, the issue also affects Y. What could substitute "not limited to" other than not restricted to/bounded to? I overused these words and looking for simple substitutes.
3
votes
1answer
64 views

Is the infinitive in this sentence correct?

John was fortunate to receive the funding. The statement uses the infinitive "to receive" instead of "to have received," which describes the state of having received something. "to have received" ...
0
votes
0answers
37 views

Can “existing” ever refer to past existence?

It included a better warranty than John's existing one, which was exactly what John needed. Can existing/current refer to the warranty at the time in the past? It needs to express the idea that ...
2
votes
1answer
63 views

Does this sentence need a preposition or article [closed]

That work made poor coaching but great training. Idea being communicated is that the work wouldn't be considered "good coaching" but it was "good training." Note that I am not using an article before ...
2
votes
3answers
110 views

Is there another expression for “my manager's manager”?

As the title says, is there another expression for "my manager's manager"? For example, in the large company I currently work for, there are 4 managers and the CEO above me. If there is no single ...
3
votes
3answers
125 views

comma with phrases that use “yet”

I am using a sentence of the following form in a formal document. This paper shows strong, yet very circuitous, analysis. The sentence is expected to express that the analysis is strong but ...
1
vote
2answers
58 views

sentence phrasing issue

I asked a similar question earlier but this one is more specific in the example. Growing up with a brother who did X and was the only healthy sibling, and another brother who did anti-X, made ...
4
votes
6answers
76 views

another phrase to express dwelled on

After the incident he dwelled on the issues surrounding the incident. What would be other substitutes to express the idea conveyed by "dwell on?" I considered "mull over", "ruminate", "moped about", ...
4
votes
4answers
312 views

A better word than “disabled” [closed]

I have recently completed a 'Lean' project on enhancing customer experience in a Hospice. Before submitting my report, I was taking a stock of the various signage at the hospital. A few of them read ...
9
votes
11answers
3k views

Non-religious equivalent expression for “Pray for [Country X]” after a disaster

When a big disaster occurs in a country, you can often see messages saying: Pray for [Country X] Are people really writing this to incite people to ask their God for anything? For instance ...
0
votes
1answer
240 views

Proceed vs. Proceed further/ahead- Redundancy

In a training session on Business English, the instructor often said, proceed and proceed further, usually, after a pause by the speakers or whenever he interrupted. Examples: I ...
1
vote
2answers
163 views

Close by or nearby? [closed]

The cops traced residential address of his relatives who lived close by. Close up/down, close off, close in are terms well understood, I have not seen such usage of close + by. Would it be ...
6
votes
5answers
339 views

A word for a man who offers his services to have sex with a woman unable to conceive

Recently, I read an advert in a local Chinese daily, it read: Surrogate father services available for unpregnant, unable to conceive woman: Healthy, medically certified and fit male companion ...
4
votes
4answers
55 views

Is there a term for a highlighted option?

I'm curious - is there a term for a character that is used to denote a highlighted option in text-based navigation? For example, say we have this menu when navigating a text-only menu: One > ...
1
vote
3answers
109 views

A word for the quality of being easy or good to talk to

What is a word for the quality of being easy or good to talk to? It is more than just being a "good listener." And it is not "open-minded," in that it's not about being receptive to new ideas. The ...
2
votes
3answers
260 views

“Skeleton project” or “Blank project”

What is the correct wording for a (programming context: PHP, Javascript, HTML, ...) project folder (= a set of files / scripts) someone else can use as a starting point? Not talking about an empty ...
0
votes
1answer
223 views

What is the difference between log in, sign in; register, login; log out, sign out [duplicate]

Although they are all over the Internet, but the answers are not fixed and were not asked all 4s at a time causing me to be confused. Is it accurate if I say: both login and sign in are the same as ...
-1
votes
4answers
62 views

How can I express the rules of this game clearly? [closed]

This is the information: There are many mixed couples playing in this game. One of the couple must award vote 1, 2 or 3 to the opposite sex e.g., a male votes 1 to a female. A couple is a male and ...
7
votes
1answer
91 views

What Charles Ingalls was really going to say?

Here is full paragraph: Pa was on top of the walls, stretching the canvas wagon-top over the skeleton roof of saplings. The canvas billowed in the wind, Pa's beard blew wildly and his hair stood ...
0
votes
3answers
88 views

Is there a noun(phrase) meaning 'the state' of being a masterpiece?

'Masterpiece' is a noun. I would like, however, to use a noun or a concise noun phrase which refers not to a masterpiece, but its state of being a masterpiece. I thought of using 'masterpieciness' as ...
2
votes
3answers
73 views

“Don't teach somebody to do bad things” - is there any expressions in English?

In Russian there's a sort of expressions like "Не учи его/ee плохому". Literally, "Do not teach him/her to do bad things", usually used, when somebody gives an advice, that could be harmful for the ...
0
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4answers
42 views

Another expression for cultural fit or likeness

I'm looking for another way to say that I doubt if person X is a good cultural fit for a certain club, but it's important for me to imply that the problem is in X and not in the club. Just to get my ...
0
votes
1answer
37 views

Need a concise term to denote “request to borrow”

The context is that I am developing a web application, in which there's the concept of allowing one party to request to borrow items from another party. Up to this point, we have been calling it ...
0
votes
0answers
32 views

“He returns home next Sunday” vs. “He will return home next Sunday”

"He returns home next Sunday" vs. "He will return home next Sunday" What's the subtle difference?
1
vote
1answer
74 views

Word or phrase describing on/off state

English is not my primary language so I have hard time with this problem. I am currently writing comments to computer code. There is setting that enable/disable some functionality. What would be ...
3
votes
3answers
983 views

“He will come back in two hours” vs. “He will come back after two hours”

He will come back in two hours. vs. He will come back after two hours. What's the subtle diff?
0
votes
1answer
463 views

in fact, in point of fact, as a matter of fact

Today I was tempted to write "in point of fact" and immediately wondered if this expression differed at all from "in fact" or "as a matter of fact." Dictionaries define one with the others. ...
0
votes
4answers
104 views

What's the oral address of “fellow student”?

I have known "fellow student" is a formal address and we used this in somewhere formally. But in oral situation, how to introduce a senior student to my friends when we face to face? If I say "this is ...
2
votes
1answer
180 views

Is there a term for saying 'all countries outside the United States' without using the word 'foreign'? (used with international audience)

I have to come up with a short description/label/identifier to describe two geographical groups: United States All countries except the United States The description would be read by a global ...
1
vote
1answer
73 views

Roll Up/Wind Up/Coil Up

Are the three equivalents? can you say: Roll the cord up Wind the cord up Coil the cord up Are the three equivalents?
0
votes
1answer
307 views

Why do we say 'last Monday morning' but not 'last morning'? [duplicate]

There was a very similar question asked about 'last night' and 'yesterday night' here but I didn't really think the question was answered that definitively. Also, I thought about how we use other ...
0
votes
1answer
65 views

heat - heat up, using the phrasal verb, spoken English

what is the correct one in spoken English? she heats the soup she heats up the soup I saw a similar question in the forum but it didn't help me
0
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0answers
31 views

Use of “off/off of” in speech [duplicate]

Why do Americans say off of when they tell someone to get off them?
2
votes
1answer
68 views

What does “So you are going to be famous ?!” express? [closed]

My teacher gave us a dialogue the other day and the boy said he was playing in a band so his friend said : Oh, that must be exciting! So you are going to be famous ? Then she gave us a question : What ...
0
votes
1answer
50 views

Would you write “an error was fixed” in scientific work?

I am not sure if Error ABC was fixed by preprocessing algorithm XYZ. is "slang". Can it be written in scientific work? Is there a better way to say it? The context is in machine learning, where a ...
0
votes
2answers
78 views

Is there a shorter way of saying “Not knowing what else to do?” [closed]

Does the English language provide a shorter form of the phrase? Example: Not knowing what else to do, I kept walking through the corridor.
1
vote
2answers
63 views

can a discussion be “contentious” [closed]

Not a native speaker, so not sure if this question is appropriate for this forum. Is there a difference between "a contentious discussion" and " a discussion on something contentious". Apparently the ...
3
votes
3answers
71 views

Does “to be on the surface” mean to make something known to the public?

Can I use the expression "be on the surface" to mean that somebody finally makes himself known to the general public? For example They have been ignored so far by the public, but they are now ...
0
votes
2answers
72 views

Is there a generic expression for a “universal product”?

In Lucky Luke vol 38, some character named Doc Doxey tries to sell a product that works for almost everything (elixir) like a Swiss army knife with very general reported usage. Is there a name for ...
8
votes
8answers
1k views

Term for situation where alternative choice is not really one [duplicate]

What would you call a situation where the current one sucks but you have a 'choice' to an alternative, however the alternative is not really one. Such as, "Sure living in an area under a ...
1
vote
3answers
194 views

If a character is boring and predictable, is he one-dimensional, or two-dimensional?

Let's suppose you have a character that's cliche, boring, and uninspired. Would you call the character one-dimensional, or two-dimensional? Both uses seem to make sense to me. For example, if a ...
3
votes
4answers
63 views

Word for a decaying and renewing system, like a coral reef

Jungles and coral reefs are built in a piecemeal way: parts of them are always decaying, being patchily replaced by the fresh new bits springing up. The whole ecology acts as a single discordant ...
0
votes
2answers
66 views

Word/Expression for a concept made simple as a result of mastery

Is there a word or expression that conveys this meaning: A text (and more generally an expressed idea about any field) seems very clear (crystal clear). But it is clear only because the author has ...
0
votes
0answers
45 views

Way to ask interviewer (/speaking examiner) to repeat slowly its question [duplicate]

The accent of a speaking examiner is sometimes difficult to understand completely. Asking him to repeat his question is a delicate action that should be handled correctly, in my consideration. ...