I would like to know if both are correct (if so, in what context and why):

Storing the data is important.
Storing of the data was implemented using ABC.

I do not know where the "of" preposition is required. The same would be with "displaying":

Displaying the picture.
Displaying of the picture.

  • 2
    Why not copy most others, and refer to data storage and picture display? Aug 3, 2014 at 14:26

2 Answers 2


"Storing the data is important" is correct, but it would be more usual to say "Storage of the data was implemented using ABC".

Storage is "the act of storing" (see here: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/storage for example) which is what your second sentence is talking about.

For your second examples the first sentence is again correct, and the second would more usually be "Display of the picture".

I've said more usually: it is possible to say "Displaying of the picture" and it's not wrong, but it is unusual and might be better reserved for stylistic effect.

  • So the actual thing is that when I use the noun ("storage") I need to use the "OF", of course. But is there a difference in the meaning between these two?
    – Sillan
    Aug 3, 2014 at 14:21

Yes, there's a difference in structure between

  1. Storing the data is important.
  2. Storing of the data was implemented using ABC.

Their subject constituents

  • Storing the data
  • Storing of the data

vary in an interesting way.

(2), but not (1), can start with an article
(ungrammatical examples are marked with an asterisk * )

  • *The storing the data
  • The storing of the data

Only noun phrases can take an article, which means that in (2) storing is a noun.
But in (1) storing is a verb -- a Gerund -- and the data is its direct object (therefore no preposition is needed). This becomes clearer with sentences:

  • *The singing the "Star-Spangled Banner" starts at 9. (noun - can't take direct object)
  • The singing of the "Star-Spangled Banner" starts at 9. (noun - OK with preposition)
  • *Singing of the "Star-Spangled Banner" starts at 9. (gerund - needs no preposition)
  • Singing the "Star-Spangled Banner" starts at 9. (gerund - OK with direct object)

You may have been taught that any noun that ends in -ing is a Gerund. This is not correct.
Gerunds are verbs and have verbal properties (like having direct objects);
nouns, on the other hand, have nominal properties, like taking determiners.
They may sound the same, but they don't act the same.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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