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The Computer Jungle

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  8. Work in groups. Discuss and cross out the collocation in each diagram that is not commonly used when talking about computers.

Though you can make ____ decision on purely economic grounds, buying ____ computer is often more like joining ____ religious cult. Buy ____ Apple, for example, and almost by default you join Apple chairman Steve Jobs in his crusade against IBM. Every machine has its "users' groups" and ____ band of loyal enthusiasts who tout its merits. That makes it all ____ more difficult for ____ uninitiated to decide what machine to buy. Students have ____ huge advantage, however. The computer companies are so eager for students' business (it builds "brand loyalty") that many offer huge discounts.

In the past six months, IBM, Apple, and others have brought out new computers, and ____ fierce competition has forced prices down. Also, time is on your side: next year at ____ time you'll have even more choice and more computing power and features for ____ same price. On ____ other hand, this will probably be true for many years. So for those who need or want ____ computer now, it's a great time to buy one.


Task 42. In the following sentences, substitute one of these expressions for the underlined words: little, quite a little or quite a bit of, few, quite a few

To clarify, little means "not much," but quite a little (or quite a bit of) means "a rather large amount." Few means "not many," but quite a few means "a rather large number."


1. A rather large number of students have trouble with economics

2. It requires a rather large amount of reading.

3. Not many advisors spend as much time with their students.

4. He hasn't much hope of passing his exams.

5. George's advisor spends a rather large amount of time with him.

6. He doesn't know many people in the class.

7. Bill doesn't spend much money on clothes.

8. She spends a rather large amount of money on CDs.

9. He doesn't have many suits.

10. He doesn't understand much of the reading.

Task 43. (Preposition of directions) Complete the following sentences with the correct preposition: to, toward, on, onto, in,or into. Some sentences may have more than one possible correct answer. Remember that a few verbs of motion take only "on" rather than "onto."


1. Anna has returned ______ her home town.

2. The dog jumped ______ the lake.

3. Are the boys still swimming ______ the pool?

4. Thomas fell ______ the floor.

5. The plane landed ______ the runway.

6. We drove _____ the river for an hour, but turned north before we reached it.

7. The kids climbed ______ the monkey bars.

8. Joanna got ______ Fred's car.

9. The baby spilled his cereal ______ the floor.

10. We cried to the man on the ladder, "Hang ______!"

11. I just called ______ say I love you.

12. Matthew and Michelle moved the table ______ the dining room.

13. Allan left your keys ______ the table.

14. Dr. Karper apologized for interrupting us, and told us to carry ______ with our discussion.

15. I'd like ______ ask you a question.

16. Pat drove Mike ______ the airport.

17. Glenn almost fell ______ the river.

18. The waitress noticed that there was no more Diet Pepsi ______ Marty's glass.

19. Lee and Sarah took the bus that was heading ______ the university.

20. Mary Sue jumped ______ the stage and danced.


Task 44. (Preposition of location) Complete the following sentences with the correct preposition: at, in,or on.


1. Will you wait for me _____ the bus stop?

2. Jane is _____ her bedroom.

3. Daria's books are lying _____ the floor.

4. The girls didn't want to spend a long time _____ the carnival.

5. I let the cat sit _____ my lap, but then suddenly it jumped _____ my face!

6. Do you live _____ the city or _____ the country?

7. Trent arrived _____ the school building just in time.

8. The rancher built a fence to keep his cows _____ the pasture.

9. Kevin and Mack are out practicing _____ the football field.

10. From afar, Heathcliff could see a light _____ the window.

11. The old house had so much grime _____ the windows that Bradley could hardly see inside.

12. The shepherd boy grazed his flock _____ the grassy hillside.

13. The audience threw tomatoes _____ the terrible comedian.

14. Wrestling isn't real; those guys _____ the ring are just pretending.

15. David works _____ the field of network administration, while Marty works _____ web design.

16. The car stalled and got stuck _____ the street.

17. Audrey lives _____ Third Street.

18. If William doesn't make any money on his book, he'll be out _____ the street.

19. I'll use my cellular phone when I'm _____ the bus, but never while I'm _____ the car.

20. Passengers are not allowed to use electronic devices _____ airplanes during takeoff and landing.


(The materials are from http://owl.english.purdue.edu/handouts/esl)


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