Tag Archives: Computers

Count and Noncount Nouns: Technology Edition

In class, these topics often come up. I decided to post it here as well.

  • Hardware = noncount
  • Software = noncount
  • Information = noncount
  • Computer = count
  • File = count
  • App = count
  • Data = plural, but most people use it as a noncount noun. (datum is the singular form, but this use is very uncommon.)

Online Courses

As you may know, I’m a big fan of MOOCs. (MOOCs are worldwide courses taught over the internet. MOOC stands for Massive Open Online Course). I found a few that might be of interest to people looking to improve their English or applying to a university in the USA.

Introduction to Public Speaking:
https://www.coursera.org/learn/public-speaking

How to Succeed in College:
https://www.coursera.org/course/succeedincollege

Applying to US Universities:
https://www.coursera.org/learn/study-in-usa You can find many more courses through www.coursera.org or edx.org. Good luck, and let me know which ones you choose!

Using Slang

Slang: this is a non-count noun. Please don’t use it a a count noun! “I would like to learn some slang.” is correct, but “I would like to learn some slangs.” is not.

“Slang” can also be an adjective: “I would like to learn some slang words.”

Some people think that “slang” always means “rude, impolite, dirty words.” This isn’t totally correct. While many swear words are slang, not all slang is rude. You might use slang at work. As examples, restaurant workers call a table for four people a “four-top,” and IT workers often call a desktop computer a “box.”

Jason: Hey Ritchie, is that four-top in your section ready for drinks yet?

Ritchie: Yeah, they want three light beers and a glass of red wine.

Liz: I can’t believe it. I just set up those six Windows boxes for the daycare yesterday, and they’re already broken! The children here have no respect!

Marketing Networking

Recently, I’ve had some questions about networking and volunteering in Vancouver. A friend of mine told me about a marketing event that looks really interesting. It’s called ProductCamp, and will be held next Saturday, March 8th, at the Beedie School of Business at SFU. The address is 500 Granville Street, and admission is free. You can read about the plans, register, or volunteer at their website: productcampvancouver.org.

Go Volunteer is a job-search website for volunteers. There’s a great variety of positions available, each with different time commitments, areas of specialty, and locations. I just saw ads for a bartender at a salsa dance, a hospital communications specialist, a cook, social service providers, and seniors’ care helpers. Many of the advertisements offered discounts or benefits for their volunteers, and most offer letters of recommendation or references too.

There’s one for just Burnaby-based jobs at volunteerburnaby.ca

No volunteering post would be complete without my favourite causes:
Bike racing at the Burnaby Velodrome – they need volunteers for the night of March 21st
Technology and environmental work at Free Geek Vancouver

Remember to put your Canadian volunteer experience on your resumé, too. Use it to show that you are familiar with local people, customers, and business culture. Good luck and happy volunteering!