0

I wrote:

In general, the proposed methods search for repetitive structures to identify data regions. As a consequence, they require, at least, two or several data records to exist on a web page for the region extractor to work.

My other options are:

  • They require, at least, two or several data records on a web page
  • they require, at least, two or several data records be on a web page
  • they require, at least, two or several data records to be on a web page
  • they require the existence of at least two or several data records on a web page
  • they require the presence of at least two or several data records on a web page

Which pattern of the above is more common for the verb "require"?

10
  • 1
    The idiomatic locution is two or more. You can say "at least two" or "two or more" but combining them doesn't work.
    – TimR
    Dec 26, 2016 at 13:30
  • It's not clear why the methods require two or more regions to work ("...as a consequence...") Don't the methods need at least two structures which identify the boundary of a data region? Why couldn't the data be extracted from a single data region?
    – TimR
    Dec 26, 2016 at 13:33
  • @TRomano In the first sentence I say they search for repetitive structures, therefore a pattern (structure) should be repeated at least once so that they can detect it. In other words, at least two similar data records is required.
    – Ahmad
    Dec 26, 2016 at 13:49
  • @TRomano You are right in your first comment, however you can assume some of them require two and maybe some require more.
    – Ahmad
    Dec 26, 2016 at 14:02
  • The first sentence refers to repetitive structures which identify (your word) data records. From that sentence, one understands that the repeated structures and the data record they serve to identify are not one and the same thing. When the reader reaches the second sentence, which begins "as a consequence", the reader asks "As a consequence of what, exactly?"
    – TimR
    Dec 26, 2016 at 16:31

1 Answer 1

1

I think the first 3 options are not correct.

They require, at least, two or several data records on a web page

This one doesn't sound correct or natural to me.

They require, at least, two or several data records be on a web page

This one is grammarly incorrect, the "to" is missing between records and be, that's how it was supposed to be: They require, at least, two or several data records to be on a web page. Anyway, it doesn't sound natural too, I guess "to be" wouldn't be suitable for "two or several data records"

They require the existence of at least two or several data records on a web page

This one sounds good to me, and is suitable for "two or several data records" Among all these options, I'd prefer to use this one, it suits more in that context.

However, here is my suggestion:

They require the web page to have at least two data records

I guess this would be the most proper for this sentence, since you are saying that the they require the web page to have some requirements. If you replace the placement of "web page" from the bottom to the beginning, it will sound better and more proper.

8
  • I'm not crazy about the phrase "two or several" -- it's confusing and redundant, and I think it's what throws off the entire sentence. Either "Two or more" or "several" works fine, and makes the sentence more or less acceptable.
    – Andrew
    Dec 26, 2016 at 17:09
  • Yeah, you are right, since he is giving one requirement, "at least", he
    – Davyd
    Dec 26, 2016 at 22:45
  • he could have changed it for: "They require the web page to have at least 2 data records" several data records would not be necessary, it's just necessary to describe the minimum requirement.
    – Davyd
    Dec 26, 2016 at 22:46
  • @Andrew and DavydDiniz what about the rest of the sentence? could it be: "They require the web page to have at least 2 data records to work/ for them to work""
    – Ahmad
    Dec 27, 2016 at 10:46
  • By the way I prefer " ... the page to contain two data records..." hows that?
    – Ahmad
    Dec 27, 2016 at 10:57

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .