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Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question

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Re: Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question [#permalink] New post 06 Feb 2013, 00:48
egmat wrote:
Sachin9 wrote:
Hi Payal,
Can't 'do' be missing because of usage of ellipsis as mentioned in my post below:
apple-the-company-that-has-the-highest-tricky-sc-question-146724.html#p1177558


Great question Sachin. The concept behind your doubt is one of the main things being tested in this question. If I were to generalize your question, what you are asking is "when can we omit the helping verb and when can we not". We have explained this in detail in the article below: Please review it thoroughly and then apply the learning on the sentence in this question.
http://e-gmat.com/blogs/?p=194

We omit words (ellipses) only till the point the sentence communicates clear meaning. There should not be any ambiguity in the meaning communicated by the sentence.
Let's take the sentence again: this time simplified version of the sentence:

Apple focuses more on simplistic and functional design than its competitors.
As discussed in the official solution, there are two possible interpretations of this sentence. Now what I will do is progressively start to omit words and see what I get when I omit too much.

A: Apple focuses more on simplistic and functional design than its competitors do.
Expanded1 A: Apple focuses more on simplistic and functional design than its competitors focus.
Expanded2 A: Apple focuses more on simplistic and functional design than its competitors do. {replacing focus with do}
Expanded3 A: Apple focuses more on simplistic and functional design than its competitors do. {Omitting do}

B: Apple focuses more on simplistic and functional design than on its competitors.
Expanded B: Apple focuses more on simplistic and functional design than Apple focuses on its competitors.
Expanded2 B: Apple focuses more on simplistic and functional design than Apple focuses on its competitors. {omitting SV}
Expanded3 B: Apple focuses more on simplistic and functional design than on its competitors. {omitting on}

Notice that Expanded3A is same as Expanded3B = simplified original choice A. In both cases when I omitted too much i.e. omitted "do" in case A and omitted "on" in case B, I got a sentence that is now ambiguous.

And hence the takeaway:
Image
1. The sentence must be constructed in such a way that the comparison is absolutely clear. As we saw in this case due to omission of words, the comparison was no longer clear. So when we omit words we should always make sure that the comparison does not become unclear.

I hope this helps clarify the confusion. In addition to this question, apply this learning on the official question from OG Verbal Review 2 - #103.

Regards,

Payal


Thanks Payal. I was wondering why would a company focus on a competitor. Company would rather focus on things to get ahead of competitor for eg, design in this case and hence I eliminated the meaning that could be derived from C

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Re: Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question [#permalink] New post 06 Feb 2013, 08:57
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Re: Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question [#permalink] New post 06 Feb 2013, 14:35
hi,
i really got confused, between C & D.
C. more on simplistic and functional design than on
E. more on simplistic design and is more functional than are

though i went for E as C sounded awkward to me(change of meaning).

is there any other error in E apart from change in meaning.
i feel usage of 'more' after focusses can be incorrect in E.
as sentence doesn't compare 'simplistic design' with anything..

br//suryav
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Re: Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question [#permalink] New post 07 Feb 2013, 08:11
Expert's post
Sachin9 wrote:
Thanks Payal. I was wondering why would a company focus on a competitor. Company would rather focus on things to get ahead of competitor for eg, design in this case and hence I eliminated the meaning that could be derived from C


Good question. At the risk of getting beyond the scope of Sentence Correction, I will put forth the term "competitive benchmarking". Companies frequently do competitive benchmarking to determine the capabilities and direction of their competitors. Or in other words companies "focus on their competitors" and with this as one of the inputs they establish their strategic direction. Now yes definitely one of the outcomes could be to improve the design of their products to get ahead of their competitors - but this comes from the focus on the competitor.

Now an example of scenario in which choice C is true is as follows: Apple's current version of iPhone is already much ahead of its competitor products. But instead of focusing on what other stuff its competitors are doing, Apple focuses on making its iPhone much more simplistic in design.

I hope this helps resolve the confusion. I think you may have been thinking way beyond the scope of this sentence.

Regards,
Payal

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Re: Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question [#permalink] New post 07 Feb 2013, 08:16
egmat wrote:
Sachin9 wrote:
Thanks Payal. I was wondering why would a company focus on a competitor. Company would rather focus on things to get ahead of competitor for eg, design in this case and hence I eliminated the meaning that could be derived from C


Good question. At the risk of getting beyond the scope of Sentence Correction, I will put forth the term "competitive benchmarking". Companies frequently do competitive benchmarking to determine the capabilities and direction of their competitors. Or in other words companies "focus on their competitors" and with this as one of the inputs they establish their strategic direction. Now yes definitely one of the outcomes could be to improve the design of their products to get ahead of their competitors - but this comes from the focus on the competitor.

Now an example of scenario in which choice C is true is as follows: Apple's current version of iPhone is already much ahead of its competitor products. But instead of focusing on what other stuff its competitors are doing, Apple focuses on making its iPhone much more simplistic in design.

I hope this helps resolve the confusion. I think you may have been thinking way beyond the scope of this sentence.

Regards,
Payal


Thanks Payal,
One one hand, we are asked not to assume or bring outside knowledge but on the other hand, we are also asked to conform to common sense.

These are fine lines which I have not been able to apply appropriately in SC. My accuracy in SC is 80-90% and the only questions I miss are those that test the above mentioned fine lines.

I have no idea how I can reach accuracy of 100% in SC.

Would be glad if you could write an article on difference between bringing outside knowledge and conformance to common sense for the benefit of gmatclub folks.

Regards,
Sachin

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Re: Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question [#permalink] New post 25 Sep 2013, 09:32
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Re: Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question [#permalink] New post 25 Jan 2014, 20:08
Which is it? is it A or C?
My first impression is that it's A, because the intended meaning is that Apple focuses more on those things than its competitors do, not that Apple focuses more on those things than ON competitors. These are two different meanings and it's difficult to understand author's meaning.
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Re: Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question [#permalink] New post 27 Jan 2014, 07:35
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gmatjewel wrote:
Which is it? is it A or C?
My first impression is that it's A, because the intended meaning is that Apple focuses more on those things than its competitors do, not that Apple focuses more on those things than ON competitors. These are two different meanings and it's difficult to understand author's meaning.


Hi gmatjewel,

The Correct Answer is C. In the previous page of this thread, the detailed solution has it all.

The way the sentence has been written, it is really NOT clear whether Apple focuses more on design than on its competitors OR Apple focuses more on design than do its competitors. The way it "seems" to you that it is the latter, to someone else it may "seem" that the former is the intended meaning. This is the concept that GMAT tests through these sentences.

If your argument is that that in Choice A, "do" is understood, it won't work because we can use ellipses ONLY to the extent till it DOES NOT lead to any ambiguity in the comparison. The word "do" has to be present in this sentence to do away with any scope of ambiguity. This e-GMAT sentence actually do so. Hence, Choice C is correct because it CLEARLY and UNAMBIGUOUSLY states the intended comparison.

You can review OGV2# 103. The same concept is tested there.

Hope this helps. :-)
Thanks.
Shraddha

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Re: Apple, the company that has the highest - Tricky SC Question   [#permalink] 27 Jan 2014, 07:35
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