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Some small questions

Discussion in 'English Only' started by James Zhang, Sep 17, 2005.

  1. James Zhang Senior Member

    Beijing
    China/Chinese
    Hi, teachers and friends.

    I have some questions about the paragraph: “Government bureaucracies and large corporations account for most of the global expenditures on research and development, and they have the resources to take innovations from the laboratory bench through the testing stage and into widespread use. They are thus the prime actors in the development and application of new technologies. Public influence over this process is exercised chiefly through purchasing power in the marketplace-which is itself shaped by the advertising budgets of the industries that develop new technologies—and through political pressures in the halls of government. Usually however, public influence is limited to attempts to curb the use of technologies that are already well along the path to development, such as nuclear power or supersonic transportation; there is little opportunity for individuals to have much impact on the processes that lead to the generation of new technologies.

    My questions are:

    1. Are there any differences between market and marketplace?

    2. In “…which is itself shaped...", is the word “itself” correctly positioned?

    3. Why the line in “marketplace-which” is shorter than that in “technologies—and”?

    4. Is “the halls of government” a meeting room in the government’s office building where officials discuss big issues, or sth else? Is it a proper noun? I used to watch a movie entitled The City Hall (I guess so, if I don’t remember wrongly), which talks about the affairs of the New York’s political circle and stars Al Pacino (the godfather), the hall is kind of a figurative term….

    5. In “already well along the path”, I know both “already” and “well” are intended to emphasize “along the path”, but do they work well together here? Ha..

    6. Is “nuclear power” here related to any military purpose?



    Ha, many small questions, it’s gonna take my teachers’ time, but, I’m your student, ha.

    Thank you in advance.
     
  2. James Zhang Senior Member

    Beijing
    China/Chinese
    sorry.

    I don't know where my teachers are....

    So I just wanna make a small change to invite you in...

    J
     
  3. dbelle4500 Senior Member

    First, this is badly written with sentences that are too long. However here are the answers to your questions -

    1. Are there any differences between market and marketplace?

    Not really, although markets are generally refer to specific location, whereas marketplace tends to be wider such as the whole country.


    2. In “…which is itself shaped...", is the word “itself” correctly positioned?

    I am not sure it is strictly in the correct place, but many people would place it there.

    3. Why the line in “marketplace-which” is shorter than that in “technologies—and”?

    there is no significance and i think it is a mistake - i think maybe the writer (or more likely their Word processor) changed it by mistake when typing.

    4. Is “the halls of government” a meeting room in the government’s office building where officials discuss big issues, or sth else? Is it a proper noun? I used to watch a movie entitled The City Hall (I guess so, if I don’t remember wrongly), which talks about the affairs of the New York’s political circle and stars Al Pacino (the godfather), the hall is kind of a figurative term….

    It is not a specific meeting room, but a generally saying about Goverment locations. Many Government buildings have lots of rooms and hallways, so it has become common to generally to refer to halls of government. It is also thought that many deals are informally agreed in the hallways, so this has become the most important place in the building.


    5. In “already well along the path”, I know both “already” and “well” are intended to emphasize “along the path”, but do they work well together here? Ha..

    "Well" stresses that there has been more progress than just "already" on its own.

    6. Is “nuclear power” here related to any military purpose?

    No, it is related to using nuclear power for electricity for consumers and businesses.


    I hope this helps.
     
  4. dolphonia

    dolphonia New Member

    England (English)
    Hi,

    This is just adding to what dbelle4500 has said:

    2. It is grammatically correct to use that but it is used it a less up-tight version of english which is slightly more informal. It is used in that way all the time in conversation

    4. what dbelle4500 said but you may also hear "halls of power" which is less misleading as it is basically refering to goverment buildings where political things happen

    5. if you had neither already or well there it would not make grammatical sense although you could have something alse. Already tells us time and well tells us how much we are "along the path"

    6. Although both of the use the same theories developed by einstein on the breaking down of substance on a molecular (tiny) level neuclear power does not have much to do with nuclear warheads. (Current Affairs - This has nothing to do with your question but some of the equipment and testing used for nuclear energy can be used for weapons developement which is what the United Nations suspect is happening in Iran)

    Sorry for my bad english but i am actually totally english myself, have english parents and have lived in England all my life. I have just never been good at it at school. :D
     
  5. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Maybe, but difficult to explain - you may have to wait for another better answer than this. Market used at this level could mean a specific market - such as for oil, or for some other particular commodity. Marketplace carries a wider meaning for me. The sentence seems to need marketplace.

    Reads OK to me.

    There should be no difference. In both cases, I would expect the line to be slightly longer than a hyphen and to have a space at either side - rather like that one and the one I used earlier:)

    This term is a rather like "in the courts of the king", "on the streets of New York" and similar contructions. There is no reference to any specific hall. There is no suggestion that the influence takes place in any particular formal location. If anything, the influence will be exercised in the corridors and bars of government buildings:) - or in other locations distant from government offices.
    Yes - this is a normal phrase, perfectly acceptable.
    I would say definitely not. In this context, used in this way, it is referring to the use of nuclear reactors in the generation of electrical power. The only way "nuclear power" would relate to military purposes would be in referring to a particular country as "a nuclear power".

    Interesting questions.

     
  6. James Zhang Senior Member

    Beijing
    China/Chinese
    I've got to find what else I can use to express my gratitude apart from many thanks, thank you so much, etc....haaa
    Thank you all, you are great....and I'm so lucky to have come across this website and met you amazing teachers and friends...
    The posts have answered my questions perfectly, and I'll read them thoroughly...
    Thanks again...
    well, one tip about the Chinese culture, Sept. 18 is the Chinese Mid-autumn festival, the moon is very bright and almost the roundest these days, such as tonight. The moon out there now is really beautiful...I know It may be noon or sth in Britain....but at night, my teachers please take a good look at the round and bright moon...
    Enjoy everyday, enjoy the moonlight.
    J
     
  7. Derringer Junior Member

    USA
    USA, English, Portuguese, German, Latin
    My pleasure.
    Derr
     
  8. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Clearly there are differences of style in relation to spaces, or no spaces, on either side of the dash.
    I would insist there must be spaces.
    Derringer will insist there must be no spaces.
    We are both correct (unless Derringer is wrong:D ).
    It depends, then, on the style of the publication this will appear in, or on your own adopted style.
     
  9. Derringer Junior Member

    USA
    USA, English, Portuguese, German, Latin
    Okay, I wouldn't argue there is a right or wrong in this particular instance. Any publisher can make any stylistic choice it likes. However, there is accepted usage, and the no-space rule is stipulated by most major style manuals (Chicago, APA, MLA, etc.). There is some logic behind this choice. In the cases of hyphens and en dashes, the purpose of the punctuation is to join two elements of language (words and/or a prefix and a word with a hyphen, numbers with an en dash) together into one entity. Where the em dash (used to set off parenthetical comments) is concerned, the choice is more aesthetic. One em dash takes up two full letter spaces on the printed page, which is the same amount taken by a comma and blank or parenthesis and blank. Assigning the dash yet two more spaces (a blank on either side) would probably give the cute little fellow an inflated sense of its own importance.

    So anyway, yeah, I'll agree that there is no eleventh commandmant saying you can't have spaces around a dash, and in that sense we're both right. But I'll tell you this--there ain't no sense at all in saying Derr is wrong.
     
  10. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    I rather suspect we are talking about different presentation technologies.

    Where it is possible to create a significantly long dash, surrounding spaces are not required. That is not always possible. In such straitened circumstances it becomes a choice between a double dash--as preferred by Derringer, or a space-dash-space - as preferred by me.
     
  11. Derringer Junior Member

    USA
    USA, English, Portuguese, German, Latin
    I certainly wouldn't argue with your experience in this regard. In mine--27 years as a writer, senior editor, and editorial director--I've never seen a hypen with blanks substitute for an em dash, and I've never seen a style sheet or manual that would allow it, but I'm always open to new ways of doing things. So long as it doesn't confuse meaning, I ain't dead set agin' it.
     
  12. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    I fear it is the old ways rather than the new:eek:
    Checking back, the typeset versions use the long dash; the draft versions, not having long dash capability, use space-dash-space. Just to be sure, I checked a variety of internal and external source material, not only my own:)
     
  13. James Zhang Senior Member

    Beijing
    China/Chinese
    ha....I guess I've invited two scholars as my teachers...lucky enough

    I like discussion, and enjoy it, as it helps me more than thinking things over on my own...

    Thank you, dear teachers...

    J
     
  14. Derringer Junior Member

    USA
    USA, English, Portuguese, German, Latin
    If you're in Ireland, you may simply be using a style closer to the UK's. While I'm marginally familiar with British styles, they can different radically from those commonly used on this side of the pond. :) Anyway, it's been an interesting discussion and a pleasure to meet you!
     

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