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# The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X

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The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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11 Jun 2012, 21:53
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45% (medium)

Question Stats:

57% (00:52) correct 43% (00:58) wrong based on 426 sessions

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The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight is for them to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft on a 62-mile-high flight twice within two weeks with a live human pilot on board.

A. for them to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft
B. if they privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft
C. if a reusable craft is privately financed and successfully launched by them
D. by privately financing and successfully launching a reusable craft
E. to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

Last edited by Abhishek009 on 26 Dec 2016, 11:13, edited 1 time in total.
Edited OA after munnabhaimbbs's report.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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12 Jun 2012, 06:27
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The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight is for them to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft on a 62-mile-high flight twice within two weeks with a live human pilot on board.

Error Analysis:

The sentence is talking about how “a team” can win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight. Use of plural pronoun “them” is incorrect to refer to singular “a team”.
Also, “for them” is not required in the sentence because “a team” has already been mentioned in the very same clause.

PoE:

A. for them to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft: Incorrect for the reasons discussed above.

B. if they privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft: Incorrect. Plural pronoun “they” is incorrect to refer to singular “a team”.

C. if a reusable craft is privately financed and successfully launched by them: Incorrect. Plural pronoun “them” is incorrect to refer to singular “a team”.

D. by privately financing and successfully launching a reusable craft: Incorrect. Using “by…” is not correct here.

E. to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft: Correct.

Hope this helps.
Thanks.
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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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21 Jul 2012, 23:34
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The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight is to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft on a 62-mile-high flight twice within two weeks with a live human pilot on board.

I believe this is a case of proper parallelism. Notice that the underlined part "to win the \$10 million..." is parallel to the non underlined part "to privately...."

D breaks the parallelism because of "by"

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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25 Nov 2016, 08:57
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The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight is to win the Ansari prize. The other functions are the means for achieving the intention and so they don't necessarily have to be parallel as has been amply pointed out. Secondly, 'to privately finance' is a split - infinitive

D. by privately financing and successfully launching a reusable craft.

E. to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft

I am afraid E has some problems. First, we use infinitive verbs when we intend a purpose of action. In E by using the infinitives- to privately finance and (to) successfully launch --will imply that they are also intended purposes. Not so, The only purpose is to win the Ansari Prize and the rest are the means of achieving the goal; Per se, they don't have to be necessarily parallel, as has been amply pointed out here before.
Second, -to privately finance- is a split- infinitive, which is rather a casual expression not acceptable in formal language.

I feel D is superior to E.
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Last edited by daagh on 26 Nov 2016, 11:12, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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26 Nov 2016, 14:54
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warriorguy wrote:
sayantanc2k wrote:
The confusion is probably because of the difference in usage between "the way to..." and "the way is by..".

The only way to win is by financing.
The only way to win is to finance.

The first sentence is preferred as already explained by daagh sir above.

Can we use V-A-N rule here to select between D and E?

Good point - this is one way of looking at the problem:
Noun ( verb infinitive): to finance.
A comes before N.

However I would suggest to use VAN only as a last resort when no other reasoning works to eliminate a choice. Here we have solid reason to prefer D over E.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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27 Nov 2016, 03:02
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Hello Verbal Expert,

I could not select between D and E and I finally selected the wrong choice (E) by thinking the below sentence.

The best way to solve this problem is to work hard.
Based on the reasoning that daagh sir wrote, above sentence is also incorrect.

The best/only way to ................... is by ........ -- correct

The best/only way to ................... is to ......... -- incorrect

Please correct me if I am wrong.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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26 Dec 2016, 08:23
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macjas wrote:
The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight is for them to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft on a 62-mile-high flight twice within two weeks with a live human pilot on board.

A. for them to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft
B. if they privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft
C. if a reusable craft is privately financed and successfully launched by them
D. by privately financing and successfully launching a reusable craft
E. to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft

I am responding to this question because I saw a report from munnabhaimbbs concerned that the timer flagged (E) as incorrect. The reason the timer flagged (E) as incorrect is that (D) is listed as the OA.

I will say that I was not able to determine the source of this question, but I think it is a low quality question, a question that doesn't reflect well the GMAT SC.

We can nuke (A)-(C) because of the "they"/"them" pronoun mistake. The real choice is between (D) & (E).

I agree with my brilliant colleagues daagh and sayantanc2k that (D) is better than (E). One concern is a matter of idiom:
(D) has "the only way ... is by financing"
(E) has "the only way ... is to finance"

I agree that the former is slightly better than the latter, but the latter is not "wrong." This is more a subtle matter of stylistic preference. This is not the stuff of a true split on a real GMAT SC question.

Also, (E) sounds atrocious because of the split infinitive, "to privately finance." This is also tricky, because while split infinitives seem to appear only on incorrect answer choices on the GMAT SC, a split infinitive itself is NEVER the sole reason why a choice is incorrect. It's always true that the choice is incorrect for some other reason and also happens to have a split infinitive mistake.

On a good GMAT SC question, one choice is right, and each other is wrong for a clearly discernible reason. While I agree that (D) is preferable to (E), I submit that (E) is not wrong they way an answer choice on the GMAT SC might be wrong. This is NOT a GMAT-like question. I have no idea who created it.

By contrast, here's a high quality GMAT SC practice question:
With American cryptanalysts

Please let me know if anyone has any questions.
Mike
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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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12 Jun 2012, 00:07
I see that you're breaking up the dozen questions into individual ones, heh.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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12 Jun 2012, 08:50
Still not convinced why the use of "by" is wrong in D.
Though E sounds better as it uses "to" without using too many -ing forms of verb.
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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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21 Jul 2012, 23:28
can you please explain why (d) is wrong?

egmat wrote:
The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight is for them to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft on a 62-mile-high flight twice within two weeks with a live human pilot on board.

Error Analysis:

The sentence is talking about how “a team” can win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight. Use of plural pronoun “them” is incorrect to refer to singular “a team”.
Also, “for them” is not required in the sentence because “a team” has already been mentioned in the very same clause.

PoE:

A. for them to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft: Incorrect for the reasons discussed above.

B. if they privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft: Incorrect. Plural pronoun “they” is incorrect to refer to singular “a team”.

C. if a reusable craft is privately financed and successfully launched by them: Incorrect. Plural pronoun “them” is incorrect to refer to singular “a team”.

D. by privately financing and successfully launching a reusable craft: Incorrect. Using “by…” is not correct here.

E. to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft: Correct.

Hope this helps.
Thanks.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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22 Jul 2012, 01:31
macjas wrote:
The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight is to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft on a 62-mile-high flight twice within two weeks with a live human pilot on board.

I believe this is a case of proper parallelism. Notice that the underlined part "to win the \$10 million..." is parallel to the non underlined part "to privately...."

D breaks the parallelism because of "by"

it is simply the use of idom.
the only way to do something is to .....

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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31 Jul 2014, 07:05
Hello from the GMAT Club VerbalBot!

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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27 May 2015, 02:08
macjas wrote:
The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight is to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft on a 62-mile-high flight twice within two weeks with a live human pilot on board.

I believe this is a case of proper parallelism. Notice that the underlined part "to win the \$10 million..." is parallel to the non underlined part "to privately...."

D breaks the parallelism because of "by"

Hi,

The only way for a team to win... is..(option)..on a 62-mile-high flight twice within two weeks with a live human pilot on board.

The "is" has to be followed by "by".. Hence,The only way for a team to win is by....

Should be D!

Besides the first "to" is in front of "win"(a verb) and second "to" is in front of "privately"(an adverb)..

Please clarify if I am wrong.

Regards,
Dom.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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01 Mar 2016, 03:49
yes
to win team has to do something or we can say team has to win "by"doing something.... so D seems correct

But again we stumble upon D & E... both giving clear meaning, no confusion. still as someone above correctly point out, 'by'is giving away the parallelism.

Hence, E
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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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25 Nov 2016, 07:18
Dabhishek wrote:
yes
to win team has to do something or we can say team has to win "by"doing something.... so D seems correct

But again we stumble upon D & E... both giving clear meaning, no confusion. still as someone above correctly point out, 'by'is giving away the parallelism.

Hence, E

My Friend..
I disagree with you on this thing.
Please correct me if I am wrong.
Yes to+be infinitives have to be parallel with each other.
BUT, the sentence should also give the proper intended.
Basically as per my knowledge, there are 2 types of parallelism.
1. Superficial Parallelism
2. Actual Parallelism

Consider the following sentence
Sal applied himself in his new job, arriving early every day, skipping lunch
regularly, AND leaving late every night.

In the sentence above, the -ing participle phrases arriving early every day, skipping lunch regularly, and
leaving late every night are parallel.
The main clause, applied himself in his new job, is not parallel to these
participle phrases . BUT This is CORRECT.
The main verb is applied, and the -ing phrases provide additional information about how Sal applied himself.
This is an example of Actual Parallelism.
It would distort the meaning to change the sentence to this superficially parallel version:

Wrong: Sal applied himself in his new job, arrived early every day, skipped lunch regularly,
AND left late every night.

This version gives all the activities equal emphasis, instead of making the last three activities subordinate
to the main activity (applied himself in his new job).

Now coming back to our question
The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight is for them to privately finance and successfully launch a reusable craft on a 62-mile-high flight twice within two weeks with a live human pilot on board.

privately financing and successfully launching a craft are the ways to win the tounament..(simliar to ways Sai used to apply herself to the job)

Do not assume that all verbs and verbal forms in a sentence must be parallel.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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26 Nov 2016, 05:39
The confusion is probably because of the difference in usage between "the way to..." and "the way is by..".

The only way to win is by financing.
The only way to win is to finance.

The first sentence is preferred as already explained by daagh sir above.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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26 Nov 2016, 05:48
sayantanc2k wrote:
The confusion is probably because of the difference in usage between "the way to..." and "the way is by..".

The only way to win is by financing.
The only way to win is to finance.

The first sentence is preferred as already explained by daagh sir above.

Can we use V-A-N rule here to select between D and E?

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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26 Nov 2016, 21:27
sayantanc2k wrote:
warriorguy wrote:
sayantanc2k wrote:
The confusion is probably because of the difference in usage between "the way to..." and "the way is by..".

The only way to win is by financing.
The only way to win is to finance.

The first sentence is preferred as already explained by daagh sir above.

Can we use V-A-N rule here to select between D and E?

Good point - this is one way of looking at the problem:
Noun ( verb infinitive): to finance.
A comes before N.

However I would suggest to use VAN only as a last resort when no other reasoning works to eliminate a choice. Here we have solid reason to prefer D over E.

So we resort to D since it uses 'by'. As per definition, by can be used to denote the medium to achieve the goal and 'to' would be the purpose of performing a action.

E.g. I am sending the recommendation by e-mail. Here 'by' is used to denote the medium or means to achieve the objective. So we could relate it to the original sentence ---> by privately financing and successfully launching a reusable craft - we denote the only method or means to achieve the objective.

If the sentence were in the format as: Using X and Y to win the Ansari prize - we could mark them as correct? Since my goal or reason to perform the action is to win the prize.

Is my understanding correct?

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X [#permalink]

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26 Dec 2016, 10:19
sayantanc2k wrote:
The confusion is probably because of the difference in usage between "the way to..." and "the way is by..".

The only way to win is by financing.
The only way to win is to finance.

The first sentence is preferred as already explained by daagh sir above.

I respectfully disagree with you and Daag. In the following OG, 'to+ infinitive' does not express intention.

The only way for growers to salvage frozen citrus is to process them quickly into juice concentrate before they rot when warmer weather returns.

(A) to process them quickly into juice concentrate before they rot when warmer weather returns

(B) if they are quickly processed into juice concentrate before warmer weather returns to rot them

(C) for them to be processed quickly into juice concentrate before the fruit rots when warmer weather returns

(D) if the fruit is quickly processed into juice concentrate before they rot when warmer weather returns

(E) to have it quickly processed into juice concentrate before warmer weather returns and rots the fruit

I'm happy if you can cite any OG question that use 'the way to....is by...........'

I'm inclined to Mike's explanation when he said that such an example won't be split in GMAT exam.

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Re: The only way for a team to win the \$10 million Ansari X   [#permalink] 26 Dec 2016, 10:19
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