1

Let's assume that event Y occurs in a device if its temperature has deviated from its baseline for 10 or more seconds.

In other words, these 10 seconds represent a time period. And I would need to say:

This is the value of the time period for which the temperature ____ in order for Y to happen.
A) has to be deviated
B) has been deviated
C) deviates

I am not sure whether the perfect should be used or if choice A is OK.

  • In future questions try to provide more context, this kind of writing needs context to be correct. – Phil Aug 12 '14 at 17:29
3

I can't tell if the temperature change is good or bad. When you say a temperature deviates from the baseline that implies that the change is bad (maybe heating due to over current condition?). If the process and change is a good thing then use more positive words: exceed, surpass, or rise above all provide a positive view.

Example of describing a bad condition

If the temperature deviates from the baseline for more than 10 seconds then the over current alarm will activate.

A sentence like this will warn the user of the result of the temperature change. There is a negative feeling associated with "deviates".

Example of a good condition

After the temperature has exceeded the baseline for more than 10 seconds then the process will start.

You could use a sentence like this to describe a good result that the user is attempting to create.

Some notes on your original sentence

First time periods cannot be described as having a value. Time periods have a duration. Actions resulting from a trigger condition being met are best described as occurring instead of happening.

Ten seconds is the duration of the time period for which the temperature must deviate in order for Y to occur.

This sentence is most like your original goal, but does not sound natural and I cannot find a good context it would fit in. It is quite understandable though.

After the temperature has deviated for ten seconds Y will occur.

This sentence would best fit into a description of steps in a process.

If the temperature deviates from baseline for more than ten seconds Y will occur.

This sentence puts the emphasis on informing the operator of what will happen if the temperature changes.

  • Thanks, well, its neither a positive or a negative change, it is just something that happens. Anyway, it is a documentation and I would need to start like this: This variable holds a value of a duration for which .... – Silkyss Aug 12 '14 at 17:46
  • @Silkyss I've added some more details to better explain what would be needed by each option you provided and what they mean. – Phil Aug 12 '14 at 17:46
  • Thanks. Would this work? THis variable holds the duration of the time period for which the pH has to be deviated in order to activate the system. //I need to start the sentence exactly like this – Silkyss Aug 12 '14 at 17:48
  • Oh, it is a code comment or spec? If it is a comment in the code "duration of time in seconds before a pH deviation will activate the system." if it is documentation "The VAR_NAME variable holds the duration in seconds for which the pH must deviate in order to activate the system." – Phil Aug 12 '14 at 17:50
  • Since the code provides context, the comments need not provide the subject: the subject is the line of code after the comment. – Phil Aug 12 '14 at 17:51

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.