All Questions

-1
votes
1answer
2k views

An approach to do something vs. an approach to doing something

What is the preferred way to express something like this: An approach to design a software system (here design is a verb) or An approach to design of a software system (here design is a ...
-1
votes
1answer
200 views

Is “along” correct in “You were the best along with person X and Y”?

You were the best along with person X and person Y. When I want to tell someone that he was one of the best in the group of people, but not the only one, can I use the word along? Or is together ...
0
votes
5answers
564 views

A non-negative, non-prejudicial term for state of being without a significant other, single? [closed]

What do you call the state of being single, without a significant other? Singlehood? Singleness? Singledom? Solity? I don't like the single+suffix varieties. Notes: I want something equality ...
1
vote
1answer
5k views

Which one is correct — “at the city” or “in the city”?

I want to know the correct preposition to use with the word city in the following context: He arrived in the city. He arrived at the city. So which one will be correct?
1
vote
2answers
6k views

Is “all but one” singular or plural? [closed]

Do you say “All but one person forgets something” or “All but one person forget something”? I'm assuming that if all means five people, for example, then the example can be rewritten as Four people ...
2
votes
0answers
1k views

Contradictory Idioms [closed]

I stumbled across some contradictory idioms, and it made me wonder how many idioms can be contradicted with other idioms! Some that I've collected so far: The pen is mightier than the sword ...
0
votes
1answer
465 views

What is meant by common terms in software company names? [closed]

A set of terms occurs frequently in software company names. Some are pretty obvious like "-soft," "software," and "apps/applications." However, some are not so obvious (at least to me). What is the ...
-1
votes
1answer
96 views

The future as reported in the past

Is (1) correct, or must it be written as (2)? John told me yesterday that this contract will not be renewed when it ends next month. John told me yesterday that this contract would not be ...
2
votes
4answers
2k views

A (highfalutin) word for a highfalutin word? [duplicate]

To illustrate the question, badroit used the word "meretricious" meretriciously. Is there an English word that describes highfalutin words like "meretricious" that are (gratuitously) used in ...
1
vote
1answer
104 views

Is 'edit' a correct term for the act of editing? [closed]

Can we refer to the action of editing as to an edit? For example as in this sentence, "I paid a lot to get that edit done, it was a long text". Or "Free photo edits for the first 100 customers".
2
votes
2answers
497 views

What is the pronunciation of “liceity”?

"Liceity", meaning lawfulness or legitimacy, is a word that seems only to be used to describe certain religious actions from the Roman Catholic point of view. The word is not present in any major ...
2
votes
1answer
148 views

What is the word for fear of growth?

Is there a word or term for people who have a fear of growth?
1
vote
1answer
747 views

Is it correct to say “a friend of X and mine” if both X and I know each other and the friend?

As I understand it, if X and Y independently have the same friend Z, we should write Z is a friend of X's and Y's but if X and Y collectively have Z as a friend (e.g., X and Y are a couple), ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

How did “snookered” become a slang word for “to cheat or to steal”?

In this question we discussed the etymology of the word "snooker" as a noun, based on a game played on a pool table. But dictionary.com references a form of the word, "snookered" as a slang verb that ...
-2
votes
1answer
4k views

Is there a word for people who are afraid of change? [closed]

We would like to know if there is a single word to describe fear of change.
1
vote
1answer
146 views

On TopGear, why is “Who would like to see. . . ?” replied to with “yes”?

I was always wondering, why is "Who would like to see [something]?" replied to with yes or yeah by the crowd on TopGear? Is it just for the sake of convenience or lack of better expression for this ...
0
votes
1answer
71 views

“Our editors compete to get your job”

I run a web service where customers submit an image with a description what needs to be edited, and editors compete with prices to get that editing job. I want to put the following sentence in an ...
2
votes
2answers
110 views

What is/are the part(s) of “out of” in the phrase “move out of the way”?

In the phrase “move out of the way”, what is the part of speech of the word “out”? of the word “of”?
0
votes
3answers
311 views

One word for “fierce passion” [closed]

I am looking for one single word to replace the phrase fierce passion. The entire sentence is: I found in myself a fierce passion to understand the language of man.
2
votes
3answers
5k views

“Normalise” or “normalize” (British English)?

Is normalise perhaps obsolete in British English, and normalize preferred instead? I have done some Googling, it seems British English dictionaries prefer normalize, but I haven't found any ...
1
vote
3answers
130 views

Is there a single word for “Use the contribution of”

Is there a single word (or more elegant word) for "Use the contribution of"? Ok, some more context: I'm looking to make a more-dynamic alternative of: The team will be composed of analysts. Too ...
3
votes
1answer
171 views

Origin of using “gets to”

As I was writing an email to someone today, at the end of the message in jest I wrote: Well, I best gets to workin’. After I wrote it I looked at the phrase I best gets to. It came to me as if ...
0
votes
2answers
159 views

Should a parenthetical verb agree with the main subject?

The question is how to write the following sentence in a parenthetical form: Loops — A loop is an arc that pairs a vertex to itself. — are not allowed here. Are the following ...
0
votes
1answer
9k views

What is the difference between “ok” and “alright”?

What is the difference between "ok" and "alright". Do the two words have the exact same meaning? If not, what is the difference? Is the difference reflected only according to different usages in ...
1
vote
1answer
35 views

Are “to it” and “about it” optional in these kind of sentences?

Examples: His story has a ring of truth about / to it. His voice had a familiar ring about / to it. Their protestation of innocence had a hollow / false ring about / to it.
2
votes
2answers
195 views

What is the word for a pair of bytes?

Bit is a portmanteau of binary digit. A byte is 8 bits. A nibble is 4 bits (half a byte). Is there a word for a pair of bytes?
1
vote
1answer
605 views

“impede” vs. “impede on”

I can’t figure out whether the following sentence needs the word on or not: It was getting crowded, impeding our ability to move around. It was getting crowded, impeding on our ability to ...
1
vote
2answers
10k views

comprise or comprise of [closed]

I have found a similar topic addressing the use of "comprise" but my question is not exactly in line with that question. I did ask this question there to keep the topic related to the us of ...
-3
votes
1answer
198 views

Humble and boasting addresses in English [closed]

In Chinese, there are rich vocabularies for humble and boasting addresses for oneself, by 'address' I mean way to call oneself with an elevated or devalued status, kind of like 'your humble servant' ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Difference between “an” and “one”

Forgive me if I miss something very obvious; English is not my native language. I am currently taking an online (sort of) Math class that aims to teach creating/writing unambiguous Mathematical ...
0
votes
2answers
207 views

“Oil blue” color

Spotted a new collocation for the word blue today, when looking for a pair of jeans – oil blue. Admittedly, they are probably just being marketing-minded, inventing (?) such a color of jeans. ...
1
vote
4answers
21k views

What is the meaning of 'in the ether'?

In the following sentence, what is the meaning of 'in the ether'? Rather than calling some function in the ether and passing arguments, we call a method on one particular object providing ...
1
vote
2answers
83 views

Meaning of inbred in context

This is the line in context from preface of the book Concrete Mathematics: Abstract mathematics was becoming inbred and losing touch with reality;mathematical education needed a concrete ...
0
votes
1answer
208 views

Comma Rules: Conflicting Rules Concerning the Setting Off of Commas

I've got a sentence where the independent clause is in the front, a contrasting phrase follows, and then a simile is made to modify or elaborate the contrasting phrase. I am wondering where commas ...
0
votes
1answer
84 views

notion of complement

Liam is very ill. (English Syntax and Argumentation, Bas Aarts) Traditional Grammar says ‘very ill’ as a subject complement. And the book says ‘very ill’ as a complement for verb be. Do I have ...
1
vote
3answers
165 views

Reporting an event right after it takes place

When reporting an action that's just taken place, would it be okay to use simple present and present perfect? She wishes to buy some clothes, so I've placed an order for her. I feel like I ...
1
vote
3answers
233 views

Choosing verb tenses

Can somebody please help me understand the whole timeline thing when it comes to choosing verb tenses? Today, I asked a friend if he wanted anything because I was going to Starbucks for lunch. He ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Should I say “have only been . . . twice” or “have been . . . twice only”?

Will these next two sentences confuse you? 1.I have only been to London once before. 2.I have been to London twice only. Now for a more complicated example, I want to express that I have ...
1
vote
0answers
97 views

False spellings as brands [closed]

When companies create a brand name, they often use a misspelled word or faux word. The classic example is swapping a 'K' in for a hard 'C', like in 'Konqueror', the browser. Another example would ...
1
vote
5answers
667 views

Is there a familiar phrase for spending too much time on something?

We all know that "a stitch in time saves nine" and "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure", but sometimes the opposite is true. A stitch before its time is a waste of time and thread. If ...
0
votes
1answer
129 views

Tricky Dick, only in reference to Nixon?

In the movie Watchmen Nixon is referred to as Tricky Dick. I'd like to know a bit more about the origin of the term and if it can be used in context other than just when talking of Nixon?
-1
votes
1answer
451 views

“have to” or “must” [duplicate]

I am trying to teach the difference between the use have to or must. But my students do not understand anything. Could you help me?
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it derogatory or offensive to call a detective a dick?

The word dick is generally considered offensive and is marked so in dictionaries. But there is also a meaning of detective that it carries. I usually find no derog indication for this meaning. Is it ...
-1
votes
2answers
7k views

Is there any difference between Loan and Credit

We are drafting a formal document. I saw somebody replaced all occurrences of the word credit to loan. There is no specific meaning assigned neither of these words within the document. Is there any ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

One word for self-clicked photographs

Recently I came across this word which means "one's self-clicked photograph". I, however, do not remember where I read it or what that word was. The article in which I saw the word was regarding ...
4
votes
2answers
392 views

Have American English speakers always used the term “last name” instead of surname?

I am aware that speakers of British English generally use the term "surname" and AmE speakers use "last name." What I want to know is how long it has been this way, i.e. if AmE speakers ever used the ...
3
votes
1answer
161 views

How to use possessives apostrophes when the word ends with a symbol?

For example, if I want to say an account of Google+, is it the same as say a Google+'s account? In other words, are possessives formed in the same way as always, no matter whether the word ends in ...
1
vote
6answers
42k views

Is x plotted against y or is y plotted against x?

Given a diagram where the x axis is the horizontal one and the y axis is the vertical one. Which of these alternatives are the right and or best way of writing it: plotting x against y plotting y ...
2
votes
2answers
7k views

What is the past participle of the verb open?

I'm French and I'd like to be precise on the conjugation of the verb "open". On this picture, I'd write "opened" instead of "open". Could you tell me more about why they have written "open"?
3
votes
1answer
151 views

Is there an adjective for people who prefer seeing diagrams rather than reading words?

I have a friend who prefer seeing diagrams rather than reading words. Is there an adjective to represent his character?

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