Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with a passion. Learn More

Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with a passion. Learn More


D. A. Wood

Member Since

November 7, 2011

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Latest Comments

“Much More Ready”

  • December 15, 2012, 4:35am

Yes, Jeremy, this is me, the Dale Wood of Auburn, Georgia Tech, and the University of Alabama. As for published papers, those are few: I had an interesting experience while I was working at Northern Illinois University. I had a colleague and friend named Ragu Athinarayanan (Ph.D. in electrical engineering) who was working on some research and writing a research paper. Ragu asked me for some help with the mathematics that he needed, and it turned out that I had studied just what he needed while I was working on my M.A. in math. So, I did a large amount of the higher math in the paper. I also edited Ragu's paper for clarity and accuracy in expression. (Ragu was from Malaysia, and he still had some troubles in English.)
In the end, I put so much work into the paper that I asked Ragu if I could be a co-author, and Ragu said, "Of course."
When our paper was completed, the next step was for Ragu to submit it to the editors of several technical journals to find out if one group was interested in publishing it. One of them did, but I don't know which one, and I don't know what title that Ragu and the editors decided to give to it. (Maybe you just told me.) Also, I only had a contract to teach at N.I.U. for one year. I was hired to fill the gap after one of the professors there had retired. The department head wanted to rehire me for another year, but the administration of N.I.U. wouldn't give him the money to do so. (I think that the Dept. of Technology just struggled along one man short the next year.)
In my case, I needed another job so I could earn a living, and I was lucky enough to get one in Chicago, about 75 miles to the east. I moved, but I didn't have to move too far. I lived in Schaumburg for the next several years.
In any case, I lost track of what happened to our research paper. I probably should have stayed in closer contact with Ragu and asked him what happened to it.
Let me be clear: That research paper was a genuine piece of teamwork. Most of the engineering work - done by Ragu - I did not understand because it was on the Ph.D. level, of course, and inside Ragu's area of expertise. On the other hand, Ragu did not understand a lot of the mathematics (of nonlinear dynamical systems) until I explained it too him.
I considered Ragu to be the primary author and myself to be the assistant author, but in the world of publications, it was simpler to list us as co-authors.
Also, while I was studying for my master's degrees, my primary area of study was in random processes (very valuable knowledge in communication systems), and dynamical systems was definitely a secondary area. So, I was using one of my secondary areas to help the primary author of the paper, Ragu Athinarayanan. Ragu deserves the primary credit for it. That paper never would have existed except that he created it.

“Much More Ready”

  • December 14, 2012, 6:50pm

Someone has disagreed and insisted that the language ALWAYS changes.
This is untrue because the changes in the language only come in small amounts that occcur only now and then (occasionally). In other words, the changes form a random process, probably of the Poisson type.
Over a period of 300 to 400 years, those changes do not make much difference in intelligibility. For example, Isaac Newton often wrote in Latin, but his works were translated into English about 300 years ago. Those translations are still quite readable.
Let me emphasize: that is not "always changing". "Always changing" is something that changes every second of every day, such as a person's blood pressure, or the contents of one's stomach..

In contrast, take something that Chaucer wrote in the English of 1,000 years ago. By now, there has been time for the small, randiom changes to accumulate a lot more, and the writings of people like Chaucer are nearly unintelligible except by experts.

Something else has happened. Some decades before Newton and Shakespeare, the printing press came into wide use, and this has been a strong stabilizing influence on the language - both in its written and spoken forms. In other words, the average rate do change has been lower.

Before the printing press, books were rare, magazines and newspapers were nonexistent, and illiteracy was at an incredible level - over 90% of the population.

Anyway, trying to explain thngs like the average rate of change of a set of small, random changes is very difficult to yokels who have never studied random processes. Yes, it is. Some of you will waste no time in scoffing at all of it, rather than trying to learn something about it. That is why I have taken to so rarely writing anything here. (I think that tonight is the first time in several months.) There are too many people here who are far more interested in scoffing at things that in learning anything from them, They SCOFF at the idea that there is a lot of relationship between language and mathematics -- but then I tell them that people like Bertrand Russell, Claude Shannon, and Noam Chomsky used these relationships all the time - Englishmen and Americans. Some of their rewards are listed here:
Russell - Nobel Prize in Literature. Shannon & Chomsky - National Medal of Science awarded by the President of the United States on the recommendation of his staff and Cabinet. Also - Chompsky, a member of the National Academy of Science, and Shannon, a member of the National Academy of Engineering.

Then they were all honary members of the learned societies on the opposite sides of the Atlantic Ocean, too.However, I bet that you can scoff at that, too. What does that fuddy-duddy the Prime Minister know? Egad, giving honors to American scientists, mathematicians, and engineer - because Shannon was an electrical engineer who earned his Ph.D. in mathematics, too.
D.A.W. . . .

“Much More Ready”

  • December 14, 2012, 6:10pm

Someone diagreed with the affirmative, comparative, and superlative trio ot
few, less, least. I will show you an example taken from wartime in England when foodstuffs were hard to get.
1. Mrs. Jones only had a few mashed potatoes to feed her family.
2. Mrs. Smith had even less mashed potatoes to feed her family.
3. Mrs. Brown has the least mashed potatoes to feed her family.
So, Mr. Brown went out and stole a loaf of bread, but he was caught, convicted, and promptly hanged. After that, his children really went hungry..

“Much More Ready”

  • December 14, 2012, 6:01pm

@tdcherry: That is beside the point. Bertrand Russell was clearly writing about shaving faces, and not about shaving anything else.
We can see that from the point that Russell wrote about the kinds of shaves that men can/could get in barber shops.
Also, as I have mentioned before that Russell clearly implied that the barber was a man. The suggestion that maybe the barber was a woman was created merely as a joke, and that;s all. So, please discard that notion.
The baber was a man, and everyojne in the village who needed a shave was a man.

Latest vs. Newest

  • October 16, 2012, 2:01pm

Thank you, Warsaw Will,

Yes, all of these are quite correct: American English, American Literature, American Embassy, American Consulate, American Airlines, American Language, American Medical Association, American Broadcasting Company, the American Telephone and Telegraph Corporation, and the Radio Corporation of America.
So many times we hear of people who were glad to accept help from the American Marshall Plan following World War II, but now they (or their descendents) want to object to the adjective "American".
Dale A. Wood
in the United States of America.

Resume, resumé, or résumé?

  • September 28, 2012, 7:36am

Résumé contains letters that are not in the English alphabet.
You might not believe it, but these all differ somewhat: the alphabets in English, French, German (with the umlauts), the Nordic languages (with slashes through letters, and often with umlauts, too), Spanish, Dutch, etc.
In Spanish "ll" is often treated as a separate letter, and there is the "n" with a tilde over it. In Dutch, "ij" is often treated as a separate letter, and you could get typewriters with "ij" on its own key. How about keyboards for computers?

Abbreviation of “number”

  • September 28, 2012, 7:23am

We often just use the number sign # in North America. Why not?

-ic vs -ical

  • September 28, 2012, 7:21am

In the study of electricity, the words "electric" and "electrical" are often completely interchangeable. Otherwise, sometimes one of these is customary to use, e.g.
"electrical engineer" and "electric motor".

You don't get it about the common rules of grammar among the Indo-European languages:
Singular vs. plural: nouns and pronouns.
Tenses of verbs: past, present, future, past perfect, present perfect, future perfect.
Masculine, feminine, and neuter pronouns.
English does not have many of the grammar rules of the other Indo-European languages because English has been simplified to a certain degree, and wisely so:
No masculine, feminine, and neuter nouns.
Many simplifications in verb conjugation as compared with Russian, Polish, Czech, etc.
NOW, so many of you Scots, English, and Irishmen want to dispose of singular and plural, and you want to dispos of {a, an, the}. Now, you want to change English into Chinese, which doesn't have singular and plural, just like "Confucius say, man who live in glass house hang lot of curtain," with these elements removed.

I am now going to drop out of this discussion because it has too many argumentative weenies in it.

So you are unable to recognize the existence of language families and you refuse to acknowledge their existence? How quaint!
You are also unwilling to concede anything towards ease of translation from one language to another? That is what I meant by having your nose stuck up 120 kilometers in the air.


“Much More Ready” July 8, 2012
Molotov Cocktails July 8, 2012
Latest vs. Newest July 15, 2012