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I am not a native English speaker and frequently face a problem (especially in my research) of avoiding many "of"s in my sentence. Here are some examples:

Optimization of control of guaranteed search of moving object on plane

and

This thesis is dedicated to construction of algorithms for control (as well as optimal control) of guaranteed search of moving object on plane.

In Armenian and Russian you can have as many "of"s as you wish and it sounds OK, but in English it is kind of awkward to me.

For those, who understand Russian and Armenian, below are the original sentences:

Armenian

Ատենախոսությունը նվիրված է հարթության վրա շարժվող օբյեկտի երաշխավորված փնտրման ղեկավարման, ինչպես նաև օպտիմալ ղեկավարման ալգորիթմների կառուցման խնդիրներին:

Russian

Диссертация посящена задачам построения алгоритмов управления, а также, оптимального управления гарантированным поиском подвижного обьекта на плоскости.

Thanks in advance.

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    The need for most of these of phrases is created by over-nominalizing: using noun forms of verbs instead of frank verbs which can take direct objects. "This thesis is dedicated to constructing algorithms which control (and control optimally) guaranteed searches for moving objects." I don't much care for that dedicated to either; why not say just "This thesis constructs"? Mar 13, 2016 at 13:53
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    One problem is that it should be "search for a moving object in a plane"; an of sounds awkward in that phrase, even if there's only one. Mar 13, 2016 at 13:56
  • To expand on my previous comment, you are doing a search of a plane for a moving object. Mar 13, 2016 at 14:07
  • Thanks for comments! @PeterShor you were right, this is the case of writing an algorithm for control of the searching system. The "control" word is a term from Control Theory (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Control_theory). One searching system may many controls and the control itself may be implemented as an algorithm or as a device etc.
    – n0p
    Mar 13, 2016 at 14:15

1 Answer 1

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You would turn some of those prepositional phrases into adjectives and, if you can, turn at least one into a verb. Verbs are the best descriptors, but too many of any part of speech can create sentence flow problems. What you're looking for is a mix of verbs, adjectives, and prepositional phrases.

I don't fully understand your sentence, but I'll try applying the above principal: Optimizing control for the guaranteed search for a moving object in a plane.

The thesis statement can be improved as shown in comments above, but for a statement that defines your thesis, the precision of its meaning is more important than sentence flow. That doesn't mean don't improve the sentence flow as much as you can, but understand that even a native English speaker's thesis statement for a technical topic may sacrifice flow for precision.

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