I have the following idea and I want to write them in a more formal way.

From the derived model, the algorithm can recognize that this and this edge are gutters but this and this are not. That mean that with the help of the derived model, the algorithm can recognize whether any candidate edge is a gutter or not.

I want to say this information starting with the “The fact that a…

Here is my effort.

The fact that a given edge is a gutter can be firmly and accurately recognized from the derived models.

But I feel it does not clearly reflect my idea. Any suggestions please


I think the primary problem you're having here is that a "fact" is, essentially, an undeniable, objective, observable truth.

In this example, however, you are using the model to determine whether or not a given edge is a gutter; that is, you're using the model to decide whether or not it is a fact.

While the statement is technically not wrong, one might reasonably assume that you mean that it is a fact that any given edge is a gutter, and the derived model proves this, rather than that if a given edge factually is a gutter, the model can accurately predict this.

In this particular case, I would avoid using "the fact that" at all. It would be more accurate and precise to say:

"Whether or not a given edge is a gutter can be firmly and accurately recognized from the derived model."

However, personally, given the vague and figurative meaning of the word "firmly", and given the nature of "recognized" as a verb that needs, generally speaking, a human agent capable of making subjective observations (as well as a few other nitpicks: there's a split infinitive, and I have a personal preference towards verbs other than "is" in formal writing), if I were to write it, I would phrase it as:

"Whether or not a given edge qualifies as a gutter can be determined accurately with the derived model."

I hope that helps!

  • +1 I've tidied up OP's grammar, which I think distracts from the central question, so you may want to edit to reflect that. – StoneyB Mar 15 '14 at 15:40
  • I suggest that determination is effected not by the model but with or by using the model. The point of the passive voice in technical/scientific writing is to banish the Agent from the discourse. But when you use by you allow agency to creep back in, and falsely attribute it to the tool. – StoneyB Mar 15 '14 at 15:45
  • Isn't the implication that the algorithm (which I assumed to be intrinsically involved in the model; in all honesty, I'm not entirely clear on the context, nor am I particularly knowledgeable of the jargon) is the agent? I will edit based on the suggestions. – Cmillz Mar 15 '14 at 16:13

The construct was almost spot on: just remember that 'recognise' (sorry, I'm British, switch my 's' for a 'z' if necessary) should be a past participle.

"The fact that a given edge is a gutter can be firmly and accurately recognised from the derived models."

You would use this construct when you want to give emphasis on the given edge. If you wanted to put more emphasis on the 'derived model' you should use the first method: "From the derived model, the algorithm can recognise this...".

In general, you can split and stitch the statement around quite a bit, but whatever the sentence starts with is where the emphasis is.

  • Sort of .. The subject defines the topic, what is being talked about, where you are 'looking', but it is the predicate which provides the 'new information' and is therefore the strongest position in the sentence. – StoneyB Mar 15 '14 at 15:56

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