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Old 21st July 2007, 14:19   #166
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I dont know whether this has been mentioned here, but i have seen many posts where they type, "sayed" instead of said and "Payed" instead of Paid. This is abolutely wrong English as there are no words like sayed and payed. In fact, they even write "drived" instead of drove.

These may be small things but are a very important part of spoken and written English.

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Old 21st July 2007, 14:32   #167
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"Equipments", "Furnitures" and "Softwares" are also wrong usage, seen very often. It is always "equipment", "furniture" and "software" when the plural form is intended to be used.
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Old 22nd July 2007, 05:11   #168
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Originally Posted by hydrashok View Post
"Softwares"
Hmm...interesting. I agree with you about equipments and furnitures, but i always assumed softwares was kinda like fishes. (ie. refering to two or more kinds of species of software)

cya
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Old 22nd July 2007, 08:36   #169
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"He had quite a collection of software".

"There was a lot of software loaded on the machine".

"I had to buy several software packages before finding the best one for me"

Nope... I can't feel that I need to put an S there.

Software is such a new word, anyway. Think about hardware. Then forget computers, and think kitchen stuff, or builders' stuff. Same applies.

(Please guys; don't go for an upgradation of either! There is no such word, or shouldn't be --- it is an upgrade. Uhhh.... maybe I mentioned that before!)

Some words have got hopelessly removed from their roots.

Data is a plural word, singular Datum. But while surveyors, for instance, may continue to talk of a datum, those entering information into a computer will never, now, enter a single item of datum!

Somebody pointed out to me that the word visa is the same; but nobody adds a new visum to the visa already in their passport!
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Old 22nd July 2007, 10:05   #170
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Default Usage of plural forms as singular

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
Data is a plural word, singular Datum. But while surveyors, for instance, may continue to talk of a datum, those entering information into a computer will never, now, enter a single item of datum!
I'm familiar with software manuals using, of "entering a single datum", or even "entering a single data-point". cf. a single element in an array.
...although not of entering a single item of datum.
It was frequently "...of entering a single item of data (as in, a single item out of the the entire collection of data)..."

"Give me a pair of scissors", not "give me a scissor (commonly mispronounced caesar)"
and "Give me a pair of pants", although "give me a pant" is the increasing common corrupt usage.

Also criteria (the plural form), beats criterion (the singular form) in common parlance.

So, "What are the criteria?" is correct.
"What is the criteria?" is wrong.

Similarly...
"What is on the agenda?" is correct.
"What is the agenda?" is wrong.
Puristically agendums (singular forms) are on the agenda (the plural form)

Ram

Last edited by Ram : 22nd July 2007 at 10:10.
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Old 22nd July 2007, 15:51   #171
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Quote:
... a single item of data (as in, a single item out of the the entire collection of data) ...
Very satisfactory explantation!

Some of our English plurals are weird, some irregular, but this plural reference to a singular thing is just crazy! What is a scissor? why is it always a pair of scissors? Hey! Can you pass me those two knives; the ones joined together by a rivet... Must have been something called a scissor, once...

Same with pants. And trousers. But shirts have got two arms, and we don't wear of pair of shirts.

We can start some plural lists.

unchanged in the plural eg fish, sheep

irregular plural mouse/mice, die/dice --- but not spouse/spice!

foreign origin such as the other Latin examples you've given.

die and dice is an oft-misused one: throwing the dice. Only if there is more than one; the singular is die.

Criterion, by the way, is one that I do try to remember to get right.

And I forgot to mention news! Have you got a new for me?
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Old 24th July 2007, 09:22   #172
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Good English
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Old 24th July 2007, 09:34   #173
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Sam, that was a very good and enlightening post. I really hope that it helps our members improve their writing skills.
Nothing wrong in speaking and writing good English.
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Old 24th July 2007, 23:30   #174
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Sam, your answer to my previous question was convincing.
I have one more question.
Situation: I get in to the lift in my office (or my client's office) in 1st floor. There are 3 guys already in the lift who are strangers to me. While I come out of the lift on 5th floor these guys are still there, probably they are going 7th floor. We have spent some 20 seconds in the lift and had smiled at each other vaguely.
My question here is, while leaving the lift should I say 'thank you' or something like that to them or exit the place without any expressions?
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Old 25th July 2007, 00:37   #175
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shyamhegde View Post
Sam, your answer to my previous question was convincing.

My question here is, while leaving the lift should I say 'thank you' or something like that to them or exit the place without any expressions?
more of an etiquette question.

depends on your rapport with them.

if you had entered with "hi", it makes sense to say "have a nice day" or something like that. if you managed with just a smile, you can part with a smile too.
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Old 25th July 2007, 01:54   #176
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shyamhegde View Post
Situation: I get in to the lift in my office (or my client's office) in 1st floor. There are 3 guys already in the lift who are strangers to me. While I come out of the lift on 5th floor these guys are still there, probably they are going 7th floor. We have spent some 20 seconds in the lift and had smiled at each other vaguely.
My question here is, while leaving the lift should I say 'thank you' or something like that to them or exit the place without any expressions?
Again, I will answer in the same way.

This is what I would do.
If we have smiled at each other vaguely, then the politeness is complete. I would not venture a thanks to them. What would I be thanking them for?

I might say something like "Ah, that's my floor. See you later then." But this is a big maybe, depending on the sizes of the smiles exchanged, if you know what I mean. In India, saying "Have a nice day" to complete strangers is a tricky thing to do. People will probably giggle and make cuckoo signs after you leave.

In the case of ladies in the lift, I find that a big smile when entering and no goodbyes offered is the best way to go. The smile gets bigger the NEXT time. By the third time, you can say what you like, as long as it's polite and mildly funny. Nice dress or nice shoes is a great way to begin talking to a female colleague in the lift, by the 3rd time you bump into her. Avoid nice top for now, or she'll think you were looking at her chest and will dislike you instantly.

P.S. I would only thank the liftman while leaving. In fact, I always do this.

No one else in the elevator deserves a thank you, unless

1) Someone loaned you money in that brief time in the elevator.
2) You broke wind in the lift and everyone knew it was you and held their breath for a while, while scowling. Then, a sorry that it happened and thank you for not hitting me hard on my head would be in order.

Last edited by Sam Kapasi : 25th July 2007 at 02:02.
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Old 25th July 2007, 02:20   #177
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Kapasi View Post
Again, I will answer in the same way.


P.S. I would only thank the liftman while leaving. In fact, I always do this.

No one else in the elevator deserves a thank you, unless

1) Someone loaned you money in that brief time in the elevator.
2) You broke wind in the lift and everyone knew it was you and held their breath for a while, while scowling. Then, a sorry that it happened and thank you for not hitting me hard on my head would be in order.
Sam, that was a fantastic answer. Thanks for making it more interesting too. 
Yes I too thank liftman (if there are any) every time. I say thanks to the security men too while leaving office or to those who help us in parking lots. I have also observed that, a 'thank you' (probably they do not expect or not used to?) surprises them and makes them to smile. Other wise they wear a very boring faces - feeling of a thank less job. We have nothing to lose saying a thank you to some one, often we gain from it.
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Old 25th July 2007, 12:34   #178
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I see no reason for the etiquette to change with the language!

Visitors to India can interpret it as rudeness that a gentle shove is given if you are in the way, rather than realising that it is a different cultural norm, and all this "excuse me; thank you so much" is just not needed.

Years back I stayed in a friend's house in Chennai. The small house was overcrowded due to a family function, and my progress up the stairs would be accompanied by a chorus of giggles and people mimicking my "please excuse me thankyou, please excuse me thankyou...

When driving in England it is customary to wave a hand in thanks or acknowledgement to anyone giving way. You'd be considered rude if you don't do this. Imagine it happening in Chennai!

If people want to know how to go on in fairly formal situations in UK, that's a different matter altogether...
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Old 25th July 2007, 21:14   #179
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
If people want to know how to go on in fairly formal situations in UK, that's a different matter altogether...
Yes Thad, if you could explain how to be formal in Europe, it will be great for all of us going onsite to the UK et all.
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Old 25th July 2007, 22:02   #180
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Yes Thad, if you could explain how to be formal in Europe, it will be great for all of us going onsite to the UK et all.
Oh boy, you want somebody to explain how to be formal in the UK? In a post on Team-BHP?

I don't think the need to be formal exists anymore in the UK than anywhere else in the world. Unless you're visiting the Queen. In which case you call her Mum, possibly pronounce it like marm, curtsy if you have breasts and bow if you don't.

Apart from meeting Liz the second, saying hello to any of the English is easy. You smile brightly, say hello and possibly shake an appendage. With, not at. Talk about the beastly (open eyes slightly while saying beastly) weather. It should be raining at that time anyways. Rain is what the English do best.

Always clap at Wimbledon and never refuse a cucumber sandwich at tea.

But who am I indeed, to comment on English formality.

I'm going to sit back with a coffee and enjoy Thad's response to your request.
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