The sentence:

features of the program needed

How should I understand it?

is it, needed modifying the program:

features of the program needed

or, needed modifying features of the program:

features of the program needed

Does It has to depend on context? If so, won't it often make ambiguity? when I read and saw the phrases, I always had to try to figure them. It bothers me a lot because often both ways seem to work.

How do you understand it and how should I express it unambiguous?

  • 4
    "features of the program needed" is not a sentence. It is not even a clause. There is not enough context here to evaluate the grammar. Please give at least a full sentence, and prferably several sentences or a parageaph to make this answerable. Feb 12 at 8:48
  • 1
    It appears to be just a noun phrase, typically used as a heading in some text. "Needed" is a past-participial clause modifying the NP "features of the program". Semantically, it is the equivalent of the relative clause in "features of the program that are needed".
    – BillJ
    Feb 12 at 9:52
  • What if you want to express this, like "features of the program that is needed"? How would you do?
    – yixuan
    Feb 12 at 11:00
  • If the relative clause "that is needed" is referring to the singular NP "the program", then it's fine as you've written it.
    – BillJ
    Feb 12 at 12:53