Choosing the best phrase for a particular context or meaning.

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0
votes
2answers
118 views

“Technology” vs. “a technology”

(Company) develops transactional data technology that aggregates information for payment service providers and merchants. or (Company) develops a transactional data technology that ...
2
votes
3answers
330 views

One word to say to someone who's being in a state they're usually not (or doing something they never did)?

In my native language, there is a singe word to say to someone who apparently are doing something they never did before, or being in state they never were before. Like: Mr. X had always been late. ...
0
votes
1answer
277 views

Better expression for “is needed to be highlighted” [closed]

I want to emphasize A and B. So I wrote: "A and B are needed to be highlighted." I feel it is not natural. What would be better way in written English?
2
votes
1answer
516 views

Is absence of the person needed in “On someone's behalf”?

In the middle of a conversation he had with my father, [Mr. X] asked him: “What does your son want to do in future?”. “He wants to do religious studies,” my father replied. He talked on my behalf ...
1
vote
2answers
405 views

What's the word in English for something that increases/decreases?

I'm a game programmer and currently working on a generic system that works for most type of games. I have a generic piece of code, that I use on anything that could increase/decrease called ...
1
vote
1answer
190 views

“extension of” or “extension to”?

What is better English: "We describe some extensions to the basic model" or "We describe some extensions of the basic model"? In a Google search, I found both of them, so maybe both are legal in ...
1
vote
1answer
424 views

Can we use **In which** or/and **By which** at the beginning of the sentence

I am wondering if it is accepted to use In which or/and By which or any other similar phrase at the beginning of the sentence and then use a comma. For example: ""Thus, only the hardware-based ...
15
votes
14answers
941 views

An expression for trying to futilely apply old methods that once worked

We are looking for an expression that captures this idea: When someone tries to adapt an old way of doing something, holding on to the original core of their process, in a futile way, instead of ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Oh my God, Oh my Lord, Oh my Gosh

What are the differences between them? Is there a cultural and/or social interference? Do young people say "Oh my Gosh" more than others?
0
votes
3answers
571 views

Is “There was not a problem” ok?

Is “There was not a problem” in common use? Example: I tried to test the device and there was no problem with it.
1
vote
1answer
759 views

to be certain to do something versus to be certain of doing something

"Paul is certain to win the race." "Paul is certain of winning the race." What is the difference between these two sentences?
1
vote
3answers
412 views

Expression choice: 'conclusion', 'taken as a whole', or 'regarding'

I am wondering if it would be more effective to use another construction: Taken as a whole or Regarding instead of In the general framework of the leaf photosynthesis limitations ...
0
votes
1answer
227 views

Put on a very impressive display

I found this phrase in a translation studies textbook, Veeraphol Nakonluang-Promotion put on a very impressive display to knock out defending champion Joichiro Tatsuyoshi of Japan to become the ...
-1
votes
1answer
278 views

“Let alone” vs. “much less” when followed by a verb

If this is Kant's position, it is certainly difficult to make sense of, much less accept. — Kant's Ethics, ed. by Thomas Hill I tend to think that "much less", used in this sense, should be ...
2
votes
4answers
211 views

What's the word in English for something that could have attachments to it?

I'm a programmer and making an attachment system. Where you could have a weapon, and different components that you could attach to it, to give it extra behavior. Example: an M16 and a: silencer, ...
2
votes
2answers
133 views

Idiom for or more colorful phrasing of “without having their lack of trivia exposed”

I am writing a children's book (8–12) and am looking for an idiom or more colorful language to be used in place of the highlighted section. Now that she’d stumped me, Ms. Sanders, my favorite of ...
0
votes
2answers
102 views

Can this be more concise? [closed]

How do I say this more concisely and more effectively in one sentence? "The baseball and the basketball(s) should have the same shape, or the shape of the basketball(s) should be the same with the ...
-1
votes
1answer
78 views

Which version of this sentence is the best?

I can think of three variants of this sentence, which are intended to have the same meaning. I'm not sure which of these are grammatically correct, and which are just preferable. I'm leaning towards ...
1
vote
1answer
14k views

Saying that the mail has an attached form filled up by me?

Let's say I'm writing a letter to a university and my mail has an application form attached to it. How can I say it in a more formal and concise way than "Please see the attached application form that ...
1
vote
1answer
63 views

How should I search information on the origin of a country on Google? [closed]

I'm trying to find some information on how the very first country came into being. I'm not sure what keywords I should start with. I've tried synonyms like state and nation as well, but none of them ...
0
votes
3answers
131 views

How to specify one had the topmost GPA during his education?

I am writing a CV and I want to specify that I had the best GPA among all of the students. What is the best way to write such a thing in north america? Does 'Bachelor with first class honor' work? How ...
5
votes
5answers
172 views

a phrase for “to lure and chop a turtle's head”

There must be a similar phrase in English, meaning to lure the target from protection (like turtle's shell) or hiding, in order to capture or kill it. My English dictionary gives "draw a snake out of ...
0
votes
1answer
389 views

What's wrong with this sentence: “Who am I doing this task with?”? [closed]

Imagine that you are in a class full of students and the teacher is forming couples to perform some task. Let's say, for some reason, you didn't hear the name of the person you are going to do the ...
11
votes
7answers
503 views

What is the verb for developing a chip on one's shoulder? [closed]

I want to say that an individual has a chip on their shoulder, but a month ago, they did not. Did they "raise a chip on their shoulder", as might be inferred from the first cited history of the ...
1
vote
1answer
502 views

I knew it already 20 yrs ago vs I knew it as early as 20 yrs ago

I know that "already" is mainly used with present perfect. I want to emphasise that something was known 20 years ago. Are the following the same? I knew it already 20 yrs ago I knew it as early ...
4
votes
1answer
149 views

Who coined the term 'affluent society'?

Prime Minister Harold Macmillan, in 1957 used the term 'affluent society' to describe the rising prosperity in Britain in those years. Does anyone know of any earlier reference to the term?
1
vote
2answers
168 views

Is use of “Oriental” racism? [duplicate]

I've heard that the word Oriental, if used to people, is racism. Is it true? And if it is, why?
13
votes
13answers
10k views

Is there a term for someone who “can see multiple perspectives”?

A colleague of mine is trying to describe herself as "capable of seeing a situation from multiple perspectives" or "able to look at the big picture from various viewpoints". I feel like there must be ...
0
votes
1answer
94 views

Can one say “find sanctuary”?

I'd like to use the expression find sanctuary instead of find refuge. Would it be fine?
0
votes
1answer
218 views

What is a less wordy way of describing how this car is situated?

I'm sitting on a bench in a park and I see this car sitting in the middle of a side street. Well, it's not actually in the middle of the street, but like right at the spot where you're about to make a ...
1
vote
1answer
119 views

“heart advice” - jarring or beautiful?

I'm translating a Tibetan text written in verse into English. The style is one of direct advice rather than learned philosophy. My aim is for the translation to have the same down-to-earth quality as ...
-3
votes
2answers
158 views

“Cross-application” vs “Application-wide” [closed]

Given functionality that is common to all applications, what is the best word or words to convey that idea? I think that cross-application fits fairly well here, don't you? If not, what expression ...
15
votes
18answers
1k views

Term for “will consume time and almost certainly yield nothing”

Can anyone point to an eloquent word or term that means "will consume time and almost certainly yield nothing"? Could be used in response to: I'm going to have one of the developers contact ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

“take the initiative” vs “make the initiative”

What is the difference between "taking the initiative" and "making the initiative"? Context : I recently sent an email asking advice on whether I should "take the initiative to contact X". The person ...
4
votes
4answers
726 views

What's the logical fallacy where people dismiss what you say as irrelevant to the real-world?

Quite often I see derision about ideas by people who label them as 'too academic'. Often this appears to result from laziness or an unwillingness to stretch their thinking. What's the logical ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Is there another way of saying “less is more”?

Is there another way of saying “less is more" in the following context? They changed their packaging and left only the essential branding on it. It epitomizes "less is more".
2
votes
1answer
3k views

you have confused me or you have got me confused?

You have confused me by staying quiet about it or you have got me confused by staying quiet about it? I know the latter is correct, but is the former sentence correct as well and convey the same ...
1
vote
4answers
895 views

Word that means to “get something good but loses something else good in return”

I was at the optical store getting a new pair of glasses and lens. Since I have a somewhat high prescription, when selecting the features for the lenses I asked the clerk whether there is an option ...
2
votes
1answer
69 views

The proofs of theorems vs the proof of theorems [closed]

Suppose that there are three Theorems, say Theorem A, Theorem B and Theorem C. I want to refer all of proofs of Theorem A,B,C at the same time. Which one is correct? From the proofs of Theorem A,B ...
0
votes
1answer
497 views

“sheds some important insights”?

Could we say "sheds some important insights"? E.g. The discussion sheds some important insights for optimizing an HTML parser If this is not appropriate, what is a nice way to express the same idea? ...
2
votes
1answer
517 views

How to use refer to previous literature/researches in research papers?

If I am talking about the topic Singapore English and I want to briefly survey the previous researches on the same topic, does the following sentences sound natural in English? In literature on ...
2
votes
8answers
16k views

What do you call a person who motivates or inspires?

My choices so far: motivational source inspirational source source of motivation source of inspiration Being a non-native speaker, I don't know which one to use. What I want to say is that ...
2
votes
2answers
213 views

Which is the correct expression for say that I have two items of three possibilities?

Which is the correct expression for say that I have two items of three possibilities? Two of three? Two out of three? Other?
3
votes
1answer
359 views

Can “Call it a career” be applied only to celebrities and successful people?

I saw the idiom, “Call it a career” in the article of New York times (May 12) announcing Barbara Waters’ planned retirement in 2014: ...
2
votes
1answer
914 views

“To go so far as to” — suitable for academic writing?

Is using the phrase "to go so far as to" in an academic context (e.g. in an article in humanities journal) acceptable? New Example: I do not know why Mister X went so far as to assert that Mister ...
1
vote
0answers
131 views

How to express this idea on formal occasions [closed]

everyone. I was making an application for iPad. It's a music game that you can record and play your tracks by touch the virtual piano keyboard on screen.But in the manage view,i want to remind the ...
3
votes
1answer
136 views

If I go to a Language School, do I go to school?

My friend, aged 21, has just started taking classes at a language school, and will shortly be doing 4 hours each weekday there. It feels very odd to be saying "How's school going?" – we finished ...
0
votes
4answers
101 views

Failing sometimes for unknown reason

Context: I have an automated test that sometimes fails for unknown reason. It's a sort of false positive: the feature it tests is not broken. Most of the time, either it succeeds or fails for right ...
3
votes
1answer
845 views

“Trust arrives walking and departs riding.”

That is the translation (provided by Wikiquote) of the Dutch proverb "Vertrouwen komt te voet en vertrekt te paard." I don't like this translation very much for conversational use. It doesn't "feel" ...
2
votes
5answers
423 views

Expression for “resource paralysis” - can't do anything because you have too much?

Is there any word, expression or proverb for the condition or state where you can't do anything because you have too much? I have heard a professor of English refer to this as "resource paralysis" ...