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Dr Grammar

some corrections in grammar

Posted by peter   8 Jul 2014 4 02 pm

Hi Alex,

How are you doing? Hope you are doing good.

I’ve got an email from my colleague who wrote this:
(1)… Our client require a semi-auto process to update market data from XYZ. Refer to the ABC specification document from link below for requirement.

And I tried to correct some errors in it:
(2a)… Our client requires a semi-auto process to update market data from XYZ. Refer to the ABC specification document from the link below for requirements.

And this version is corrected by another colleague:
(2b)… Our client required a semi-auto process for updating market data from XYZ. Refer to the ABC specification document in the link below for the requirement.

Which one – 2a, 2b, or a mixture of both – do you prefer?

Many Thanks!
Peter

 
 

Teacher
Posted by alex stringer   9 Jul 2014 11 30 am

Hi Peter

Both are an improvement on the original.
(1) require = requires - third person 's'.
(2) to update - infinitive of purpose - correct.
(3) in the link / from the link - not much difference. Both are clear.
I would probably write: 'Please refer to the ABC specification (see link below) for detailed requirements / for details.'

Best regards

Alex
 
 
Posted by peter   9 Jul 2014 1 10 pm

Hi Alex,

Followup questions:
(1) Any big difference between using present tense and past tense for "require" in this email context? Some argue present tense is for general truth and repeated action, therefore should not be used... I'm not sure..
(2) If I used "for updating", it would mean an action, but not a purpose. right?
(3) Do we need an article in "see link below" ?

Many Thanks,
Peter

 
 

Teacher
Posted by alex stringer   9 Jul 2014 2 17 pm

If the client still needs it - it's an ongoing situation - then 'requires'. (This is neither a general truth nor a repeated action.)

for doing sthg vs to do sthg

Objects are for doing sthg.
Actions are done (in order) to do sthg.

A screwdriver is a tool for tightening or loosening screws.
He used a small screwdriver to undo the screws.


Trust that's clear - it's a commonly confused point with learners in HK,.

Alex
 
 
Posted by peter   9 Jul 2014 5 04 pm

Normally for an ongoing action, we use present continuous tense.
But in this example, we use present simple.
Can I say the reason was that "require" is a state verb and hence we don't use continuous tense, but simple tense instead?


This is very useful:
Objects are for doing sthg.
Actions are done (in order) to do sthg.


Many Thanks!
Peter
 
 

Teacher
Posted by alex stringer   9 Jul 2014 6 25 pm

Yes, exactly. Require / need / want ....they are all states.

Alex
 
 

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