The following quote from "The sorcery code" by DimaZales:

Blaise was sitting in his study writing code.

lacks either the definite article or the indefinite article.

I wonder why? Is there anything I'm missing? Is the gerund that can take a direct object without the article?

  • 2
    Why do you think it needs an article? If you were writing poetry or writing prose there's no article. "Code" in this use, is the same as poetry. It's a type or style of writing.
    – Catija
    Apr 23, 2015 at 23:09
  • Thank you @Catija! However was hard to figure it out. Apr 23, 2015 at 23:27
  • Judging from the title, I believe that this code Blaise was writing is similar to programmer's code. Programmers write code, not a code. (It's kind of similar to work, not a work, in most contexts.) To refer to a piece of code (in programming context), it's better to say a piece of code, imho. See also: nerdland.net/2010/06/code-mass-noun-versus-count-noun. Apr 24, 2015 at 0:22

1 Answer 1


Code, when it means computer programming, is a non-count noun, so it doesn't need an indefinite article.

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