The correct choice of the “articles” a and an depends on the initial sound of a word, not on the initial letter, of the word that they precede.
The letter a should be used before all words beginning with a consonant sound except silent h (an honor) and before words beginning with vowels that represent combined consonant and vowel sounds (university, unit).
Examples: a boy, a European, a j, a picture, a store, a table, a bottle, a window, a phone, a hyphen, and a one-horse town.
There are also words that begin with vowels that have a consonant sound. Say “unique” out loud and you will hear that it contains in its first syllable a consonant y sound as well as the vowel oo sound. You are saying (phonetically) yoo-NEEK. Similarly, “union”, “use”, and “eulogy” begin with a consonant y sound and call for the article a. If you use your ears, you will never be guilty of “an historic” or “an unique.”
Let’s repeat and expand this concept: a is used in front of words that begin with a long u (when pronounced as yoo), eu, and ew, and before the word one. Examples: a united country, a usurper, a eulogy, a ewe, a U-boat, a European, a one-horse town, and many a one.
The word an should be used before all vowel sounds (a, e, i, o, u). Examples: an entry, an f, an hour, an orange, an ape, an odor, an idea, an eagle, an honor, an umbrella, and an unbeliever.
One of the most common mistakes, both written and oral, is the use of an before “historical” or “historic”. When the word following the article begins with a consonant sound, the article used is a; when it begins with a vowel sound, the article used is an.
So remember, a word may in fact begin with a consonant, yet have an initial vowel sound. The word “honest” is a case in point. Say it out loud and you will see what is meant.
The initial consonant h is silent, so the word has an initial vowel sound; hence, an honest man, an hour ago, an heir to the throne, an honest and an honorable peace; on the other hand, when a word begins with an aspirated h (a speech sound followed by a puff of breath or the speech sound represented by English h), correct usage is a hotel, a house, a hill, a hymn, a honeycomb, and a history or a historical.
The dietician said Keith should eat an apple every day and at least one banana.
2. A tool that has a fixed jaw and a movable jaw which is controlled by a spiral gear or slide.
It is used to install or to remove bolts and nuts of various sizes.
The wrench itself comes in a variety of lengths and jaw sizes.
A crescent wrench has smooth jaws while a pipe wrench has serrated jaws.
2. A total change of attitude or viewpoint or a complete change in the way a person behaves or thinks about something.
3. An abrupt, complete change in opinion, beliefs, actions, etc.; a sudden reversal.
James L. Sumich, Grossmont College; Wm. C. Brown Publishers, College Edition; Dubuque, Iowa; 1988.
2. A reference to, or belonging to, the ancient Roman plebs.
3. Common, commonplace, or vulgar; such as, a plebian or a plebeian joke.
The “advanced words” in the following contain valuable information if for no other reason than that the concepts of tribology are so important in all of our lives. You may find some aspects difficult to comprehend, but just knowing what the Greek element tribo means, as well as some of the English words that are derived from it, will give you knowledge that is lacking even among the very educated.
This issue of Focusing on Words will present a relatively new, and not widely known, element from Greek that is used in modern engineering and physics: tribology. This Greek tribo- element means, “friction”, “rub”, “grind”, or “wear away”.
Most of the information for this subject came from an article, “Better Ways to Grease Industry’s Wheels,” from the September 28, 1998, issue of Fortune magazine written by Ivan Amato.
- Lubrication is central to machine performance, but it’s only part of the story. More and more, the bigger picture of machine health has been going by the label “tribology” [trigh BAH loh gee] which is based on the Greek word for “rubbing.”, “grinding”, or “wearing away”, etc.
- Tribology combines issues of lubrication, friction, and wear into a complex framework for designing, maintaining, and trouble-shooting the whole machine world.
- Tribology is already providing data that could be used to produce transmission fluids that give automobile drivers better fuel economy and a smoother ride.
- The most visionary tribology advocates and practitioners tend to view their field as the cure for much of what ails industry and even entire economies.
- Tribology has evolved into a bona fide field of research and technology since 1966, when a group of industrialists in England coined the term with assistance from an editor of the Oxford English Dictionary.
- The O. E. D. defines tribology as, “The branch of science and technology concerned with interacting surfaces in relative motion and with associated matters (as friction, wear, lubrication, and the design of bearings).” In 1968, H.P. Jost, in the February 8, 1968, issue of the New Scientist states, “After consultation with the English Dictionary Department of the Oxford University Press, we chose the term tribology’.”
- Many tribologists devote themselves to uncovering the fundamental chemical and physical dramas that underlie good and bad lubrication, friction, and wear. They are relying on new tools like friction-force microscopes, that can examine surfaces down to the molecular level (nanotribology?).
- Transmissions are just one place where tribology makes a difference in the automotive industry. Other items on the agenda include controlling brake noise and wear, reducing internal friction in engines, and increasing the productivity, part quality, and energy efficiency of production machinery.
- The “tribology tribe” points proudly to its crucial role in the thirty-billion dollar-a-year data-storage industry. When it comes to surfaces in motion, this is an especially harrowing arena. Yet it’s through tribological know-how that makers of hard-disk drives have been able to squeeze more and more data into less and less space.
- The head that reads and writes information to and from a hard disk flies about 50 to 100 nanometers above the disk surface. That’s about one-thousandth the width of a human hair. Meanwhile, the disk typically spins beneath the head at about ten to twenty meters per second.
- Woody Monroy, head of corporate communications for Seagate Technology, which makes disk drives, says that in terms of speed and clearance, it’s the equivalent of an F-16 jet fighter plane flying one-sixty second of an inch [less than one millimeter] above the ground, counting blades of grass as it goes, at Mach 813 (or 813 times the speed of sound).
- There are many reasons computers go down, but one of the most dreaded is when the head assembly literally crashes into the spinning disk’s surface, tearing up and destroying precious data.
- It’s a tribological triumph that, despite all the hazards, vulnerabilities, and abuse by users, most storage systems operate fine most of the time because of proper coatings. The first protective layer is at most twenty nanometers thick. One leading-edge tribo-tactic is to fiddle with the molecular structure of the thin lubrication layer on top of the disk (nanotribology?).
- Tribologists have plenty of challenges to keep them busy, but it’s all part of making disk drives and economies run smoothly.
Mr. Villafane carves and composes many pumpkins and creates additional structures with other materials for the pleasure of viewers.
A click on this entry will take you to his home page where you can view many more of his achievements and see some interesting videos about his work
The rich green color of these stones are caused by the presence of chromium, a hard white metal.
In ancient times, powdered emerald was believed to cure fever and the plague.
Emeralds are formed from a combination of three main minerals: silicon (the chief constituent of sand and quartz), aluminum, and beryllium.
Colombia is the source of the finest emeralds.
"The technology giant introduced Google Wallet, a mobile application that will allow consumers to pay at a store by waving their cellphones at a retailer's terminal instead of using a credit card [or cash]."
"The app, for the Android operating system also will enable users to redeem special coupons and earn loyalty points."
Ms. McLaurin was invited as part of a Black History Month celebration. “I thought I would never live to get into the White House and I tell you I am so happy to have a black president,” she said to the smiling Barack Obama and the first lady, Michelle Obama.