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"Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance

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"Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Nov 2012, 04:02
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B
C
D
E

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"Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance remains functional without breaking down. Sixty years ago, average refrigerator durability was 15 years, whereas now refrigerators operate continuously for more than 40 years on average. Thus, at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.

Which of the following, if true, undermines the argument above?

A: Today, many more households own refrigerators than did households sixty years ago.
B: Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership.
C: Many of the refrigerators that last an extremely long time today do so only because of engineering technology that was not available sixty years ago.
D: The proportion of refrigerators that break down when they are between 35 years and 40 years old is significantly smaller today than is the proportion of refrigerators that break down after 40 years.
E: More refrigerators sixty years ago received regular service than receive it today.

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New post 31 Oct 2013, 01:28
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Supernova29 wrote:
Could someone please explain this through options. I thought D was close.


Hi Supernova29

I'm glad to help.

ANALYZE THE STIMULUS:

Fact: Sixty years ago, average refrigerator durability was 15 years,
Fact: Now refrigerators operate continuously for more than 40 years on average.
Conclusion: at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.

Assumption: The comparison of average durability is valid. On the other hand, there is NO other factor that makes the estimation of average durability incorrect.

Question: Which of the following, if true, undermines the argument above?

ANALYZE EACH ANSWER:

A: Today, many more households own refrigerators than did households sixty years ago.
Wrong. "More refrigerators" says nothing about average durability increases or decreases. Thus, A does nothing to weaken the conclusion.

B: Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership.
Correct. B mentions that the comparison of the argument is INCORRECT because there is a factor virtually makes the average durability of refrigerators now increase than that of refrigerators in the past. Thus, B weakens the conclusion and is correct answer.

C: Many of the refrigerators that last an extremely long time today do so only because of engineering technology that was not available sixty years ago.
Wrong. TEMPTING but wrong. C does not weaken the conclusion, but rather strengthens the conclusion. Why? Because C means a refrigerator now can live longer because of improved engineering technology.
==> So if there is NO engineering technology the average durability of refrigerators now may be only 15 years or equal that of a refrigerator sixty years ago.
==> On the other hand, that the average durability 15 years in the past without engineering technology = average durability 40 years now with improved engineering technology is a CORRECT comparison.

D: The proportion of refrigerators that break down when they are between 35 years and 40 years old is significantly smaller today than is the proportion of refrigerators that break down after 40 years.
Wrong. D means almost refrigerators now can live for 40 years whereas those in the past can live only for 15 years. Thus, that 15 years in the past = 40 years now is a CORRECT comparison. D strengthens the conclusion. D is wrong.

E: More refrigerators sixty years ago received regular service than receive it today.
Wrong. E means the quality of refrigerators in the past is worse than in the current. Thus, if a refrigerator lived for 15 years sixty years ago, we definitely considered the refrigerator near the end of its life. Thus, E does not weaken the conclusion.

Hope it helps.
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Re: "Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Nov 2012, 05:08
gmatbull wrote:
"Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance remains functional without breaking down. Sixty years
ago, average refrigerator durability was 15 years, whereas now refrigerators operate continuously for more than
40 years on average. Thus, at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their
operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.

Which of the following, if true, undermines the argument above?

A: Today, many more households own refrigerators than did households sixty years ago.
B: Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the
number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership.
C: Many of the refrigerators that last an extremely long time today do so only because of engineering technology
that was not available sixty years ago.
D: The proportion of refrigerators that break down when they are between 35 years and 40 years old is significantly
smaller today than is the proportion of refrigerators that break down after 40 years.
E: More refrigerators sixty years ago received regular service than receive it today.



Y not C here???

C seems to be more Weaken the argument for me...
If there was good tech 60 yrs ago they would have had better life time for refrigerators....

Isn't this undermining argument???
Please explain
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Re: "Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Nov 2012, 06:43
shanmugamgsn wrote:
gmatbull wrote:
"Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance remains functional without breaking down. Sixty years
ago, average refrigerator durability was 15 years, whereas now refrigerators operate continuously for more than
40 years on average. Thus, at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their
operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.

Which of the following, if true, undermines the argument above?

A: Today, many more households own refrigerators than did households sixty years ago.
B: Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the
number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership.
C: Many of the refrigerators that last an extremely long time today do so only because of engineering technology
that was not available sixty years ago.
D: The proportion of refrigerators that break down when they are between 35 years and 40 years old is significantly
smaller today than is the proportion of refrigerators that break down after 40 years.
E: More refrigerators sixty years ago received regular service than receive it today.



Y not C here???

C seems to be more Weaken the argument for me...
If there was good tech 60 yrs ago they would have had better life time for refrigerators....

Isn't this undermining argument???
Please explain



Hi there

og-critical-reasoning-1-i-disagree-107699.html
refer to the link similar question....the above question is an interpretation of the question 1 CR section of OG 12 dealing with life expectancy....
hope that helps
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Re: "Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Oct 2013, 23:58
Could someone please explain this through options. I thought D was close.
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Re: "Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 31 Oct 2013, 04:21
hi pqhai,
Thanks so much. It does help. I found the question a little twisted with clarity lacking in its stimulus and the question stem.
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Re: "Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Aug 2014, 23:25
shanmugamgsn wrote:
gmatbull wrote:
"Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance remains functional without breaking down. Sixty years
ago, average refrigerator durability was 15 years, whereas now refrigerators operate continuously for more than
40 years on average. Thus, at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their
operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.

Which of the following, if true, undermines the argument above?

A: Today, many more households own refrigerators than did households sixty years ago.
B: Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the
number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership.
C: Many of the refrigerators that last an extremely long time today do so only because of engineering technology
that was not available sixty years ago.
D: The proportion of refrigerators that break down when they are between 35 years and 40 years old is significantly
smaller today than is the proportion of refrigerators that break down after 40 years.
E: More refrigerators sixty years ago received regular service than receive it today.



Y not C here???

C seems to be more Weaken the argument for me...
If there was good tech 60 yrs ago they would have had better life time for refrigerators....

Isn't this undermining argument???
Please explain



I too fell for "C", but I guess "C" would be more appropriate had the question asked us to weaken/undermines the CONCLUSION but not the argument..
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New post 09 Aug 2014, 07:08
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Amit0507 wrote:
shanmugamgsn wrote:
gmatbull wrote:
"Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance remains functional without breaking down. Sixty years
ago, average refrigerator durability was 15 years, whereas now refrigerators operate continuously for more than
40 years on average. Thus, at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their
operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.

Which of the following, if true, undermines the argument above?

A: Today, many more households own refrigerators than did households sixty years ago.
B: Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the
number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership.
C: Many of the refrigerators that last an extremely long time today do so only because of engineering technology
that was not available sixty years ago.
D: The proportion of refrigerators that break down when they are between 35 years and 40 years old is significantly
smaller today than is the proportion of refrigerators that break down after 40 years.
E: More refrigerators sixty years ago received regular service than receive it today.



Y not C here???

C seems to be more Weaken the argument for me...
If there was good tech 60 yrs ago they would have had better life time for refrigerators....

Isn't this undermining argument???
Please explain



I too fell for "C", but I guess "C" would be more appropriate had the question asked us to weaken/undermines the CONCLUSION but not the argument..


Well, the conclusion is basically stating the author's claim ---> which is the heart of the argument.
So, the conclusion is pretty much the argument.

C would be correct if this were a strengthen question. This choice is just an additional fact that aids the author's argument --- telling us that refrigerators do indeed live longer nowadays.

Instead, the correct answer is B.

B tells us that the cutdown on faulty refrigerators after the first year is one of the reasons for the improvement in refrigerator durability.
This tells us that even recently, there were refrigerators that don't last 40 years. In fact, they don't even live past the first year.
This fact completely destroys the argument, telling us that there are refrigerators nowadays that can't live past 40 years.
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New post 25 Dec 2014, 15:07
Was confused between B and C.. But finally picked B :)
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New post 07 Sep 2015, 08:40
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I chose B (Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership) with the following reasoning.

In the past, few refrigerators were breaking down in the 1st year itself. This brought down the avg to 15 yrs. So there were refrigerators which were functional past 15/20 years.

In the current time period, refrigerators which break down in the 1st year have been removed.

The argument says "at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.". This means that if somebody had a refrigerator which was 15 yrs old, they would have thought that its nearing its end. However the avg(15 yrs) has been brought down significantly because of refrigerators which were breaking down in 1st yr. Option B addresses this and thus weakens the conclusion.

hope this reasoning is correct
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Re: "Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Sep 2015, 02:03
Success2015 wrote:
I chose B (Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership) with the following reasoning.

In the past, few refrigerators were breaking down in the 1st year itself. This brought down the avg to 15 yrs. So there were refrigerators which were functional past 15/20 years.

In the current time period, refrigerators which break down in the 1st year have been removed.

The argument says "at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.". This means that if somebody had a refrigerator which was 15 yrs old, they would have thought that its nearing its end. However the avg(15 yrs) has been brought down significantly because of refrigerators which were breaking down in 1st yr. Option B addresses this and thus weakens the conclusion.

hope this reasoning is correct


Responding to a pm:
The reasoning is correct.
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New post 29 Jun 2017, 05:16
We can weaken the argument in the following way-

There is no significant technological advances in refrigeration in last 60 years. Assume 60 years back 2 types of refrigerators were one that had life span of only 1 year and one with the lifespan of more than 40 years. Now obviously overall average drops. And today (after 60 years ) manufacturers have stopped manufacturing refrigerator which had 1 years of life expectancy.

Now tell what do you understand? Many people 60 years back would have considered there refrigerator life expectancy at 40 ( Not 15 years), and today also many people will consider 40 years to be the end of the refrigerators cycle. HENCE OPTION B. which indirectly states that change in durability is not because of technological advances but we have just removed the faulty refrigerators ( which brings down the average durability) from a mere mathematical equation, and that both the generations experienced similar level of satisfaction and durability from its refrigerator.
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Re: "Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Jun 2017, 06:08
B is better than C
b/c in C, "many" and "extremely" only refers to some exceptional refrigerators, and this cannot explain the average or all refrigerators.
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New post 01 Jul 2018, 12:34
That was a pretty though nut to crack, below my rational with regards to the answer choices

gmatbull wrote:
....

Which of the following, if true, undermines the argument above?

A: Today, many more households own refrigerators than did households sixty years ago.
Contextual information which is fairly uselss with regards to undermining the argument as we talk about considered life expectancy.

B: Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the
number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership.
This gives us the best info to attack the argument. As previously refrigerators were mainly troubled by first year breakdowns we can assume that the perception ater surrviving the first year might not have been that different compared to what it is with todays longer lifecycle/durability

C: Many of the refrigerators that last an extremely long time today do so only because of engineering technology
that was not available sixty years ago.
This is tempting as it gives us information about technical differences between the nowadays refrigerators and those of the past. However, if we further evaluate this statement we notice that the premise does not change by this information. We were already told about the longer durability of todays machines in the original information, this statements just adds background information.

D: The proportion of refrigerators that break down when they are between 35 years and 40 years old is significantly
smaller today than is the proportion of refrigerators that break down after 40 years.
Again a fairly useless statement as we are not really considering the details of of todays machines towards the end of their lifecycle. This piece of information does not help us in undermining the argument.

E: More refrigerators sixty years ago received regular service than receive it today.
Very tempting choice as it gets very close to the actual context. However, just because refrigerators in the past received regular service does not mean that peoples perception of their life expectancy was influenced.

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New post 01 Jul 2018, 20:39
Can you please explain why answer choice C is incorrect?
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Re: "Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Jul 2018, 13:28
KarishmaB wrote:
Success2015 wrote:
I chose B (Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership) with the following reasoning.

In the past, few refrigerators were breaking down in the 1st year itself. This brought down the avg to 15 yrs. So there were refrigerators which were functional past 15/20 years.

In the current time period, refrigerators which break down in the 1st year have been removed.

The argument says "at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.". This means that if somebody had a refrigerator which was 15 yrs old, they would have thought that its nearing its end. However the avg(15 yrs) has been brought down significantly because of refrigerators which were breaking down in 1st yr. Option B addresses this and thus weakens the conclusion.

hope this reasoning is correct


Responding to a pm:
The reasoning is correct.


KarishmaB , MartyMurray

C also looks like a weakener. Can we eliminate it on the grounds that "many of the refrigerators" part in option C may talk about an insignificant number of refrigerators which maynot impact our conclusion??
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New post 27 Jul 2018, 14:03
Prateek176 wrote:
KarishmaB , MartyMurray

C also looks like a weakener. Can we eliminate it on the grounds that "many of the refrigerators" part in option C may talk about an insignificant number of refrigerators which maynot impact our conclusion??


C is not a weakener. C is a trap choice worded to read as if it weakens the argument, though, in actuality, it has no effect on the support for the conclusion.

To test your idea that, perhaps, C does not weaken the argument because it says "many of the refrigerators", let's change "many" to "all".

Here's our new version of C:

(C, New Version) All of the refrigerators that last an extremely long time today do so only because of engineering technology
that was not available sixty years ago.

Does this statement make any difference?

What's the conclusion of the argument?

Conclusion: at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.

Does the fact that refrigerators last longer now only because of engineering technology that was not available sixty years ago make any difference?

Regardless of why refrigerators made today last longer, they last longer. So, the conclusion, that people didn't expect them to last as long sixty years ago, stands, regardless of why they last longer today.

Thus, even our new version of C has zero impact on the argument.

To avoid choosing an answer like C, you have to carefully consider how each choice actually affects the support for the conclusion. Many choices will be worded in ways that make them seem to affect arguments if you don't look closely. So, when choosing a critical reasoning answer choice, you need to go beyond choosing a choice that kind of seems to have the effect you are seeking to supporting your choice with a very clear rationale.
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Re: "Durability" is the measure of how long a certain appliance  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Aug 2018, 21:51
Prateek176 wrote:
KarishmaB wrote:
Success2015 wrote:
I chose B (Most of the improvements in durability in the past sixty years have been achieved through cutting down on the number of refrigerators that break down in the first year of ownership) with the following reasoning.

In the past, few refrigerators were breaking down in the 1st year itself. This brought down the avg to 15 yrs. So there were refrigerators which were functional past 15/20 years.

In the current time period, refrigerators which break down in the 1st year have been removed.

The argument says "at that time, people must have considered refrigerators to be nearing the end of their operational life at an age that we now consider will leave many more working years.". This means that if somebody had a refrigerator which was 15 yrs old, they would have thought that its nearing its end. However the avg(15 yrs) has been brought down significantly because of refrigerators which were breaking down in 1st yr. Option B addresses this and thus weakens the conclusion.

hope this reasoning is correct


Responding to a pm:
The reasoning is correct.


KarishmaB , MartyMurray

C also looks like a weakener. Can we eliminate it on the grounds that "many of the refrigerators" part in option C may talk about an insignificant number of refrigerators which maynot impact our conclusion??


(C) is not a weakener.
Note that we don't care WHY the refrigerators are more durable today. What the argument tries to establish is that they ARE more durable today. That they actually do last longer today. So, if previously people would consider end of life at 15 yrs, today they expect many more working years.
(B) tells us that the reason we are seeing an improved Durability number is that the ones pulling down the average have been removed. So it is possible that a typical refrigerator lasts just as long as it did before but the "average age" has improved by taking care of the "bad" pieces.

(C) gives us a reason why refrigerators last longer today (because of technology not available before). It actually helps establish that refrigerators perhaps do last longer today. If anything, it might strengthen the argument by making it more plausible.
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New post 06 Aug 2018, 04:27
Can you please provide a more detailed explanation as to why b is the answer? Maybe with a few numbers? My understanding is that because of a number of devices breaking down at 1 year, the average was brought down though the real life of the ones that didn't break down at first year was in fact more than 15
Now that the 1st year ones are removed,the average is back to being high.
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New post 06 Aug 2018, 06:20
rahulkashyap wrote:
Can you please provide a more detailed explanation as to why b is the answer? Maybe with a few numbers? My understanding is that because of a number of devices breaking down at 1 year, the average was brought down though the real life of the ones that didn't break down at first year was in fact more than 15
Now that the 1st year ones are removed,the average is back to being high.
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Yes, your logic is correct.

Avg of
1, 1, 1, 1, 2, 15, 25, 30, 30, 35, 60 is about 18

Avg of
2, 15, 25, 30, 30, 35, 60 is about 30

We just took out the ones that broke in the 1st year and the average has been bumped up. The rest of the things have stayed as it is.
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