Comparing Genres

Learning Objectives

  • Analyze characteristics from different genres of text

Below you’ll read excerpts from different types of sources. Before knowing much about the pieces, like who wrote them or where they were first published, consider what you learn about them just from these snippets.

Parking garage.

Figure 1. Based on which sources you read, you can learn about different information and opinions in relation to cars.

Example 1

Example 1

“Electric and Plug-in Hybrids”

Learning Objectives

After reading this module, students should be able to

  • outline the traditional dependence of transportation on oil and the internal combustion engine
  • understand two alternatives to oil as a transportation fuel: hydrogen and electricity
  • understand the dual use of oil and electricity in hybrid vehicles and their impact on energy efficiency and carbon emissions

Introduction

Since the early 20th Century, oil and the internal combustion engine have dominated transportation. The fortunes of oil and vehicles have been intertwined, with oil racing to meet the energy demands of the ever growing power and number of personal vehicles, vehicles driving farther in response to growing interstate highway opportunities for long distance personal travel and freight shipping, and greater personal mobility producing living patterns in far-flung suburbs that require oil and cars to function. In recent and future years, the greatest transportation growth will be in developing countries where the need and the market for transportation is growing rapidly. China has an emerging middle class that is larger than the entire population of the United States, a sign that developing countries will soon direct or strongly influence the emergence of new technologies designed to serve their needs. Beyond deploying new technologies, developing countries have a potentially large second advantage: they need not follow the same development path through outdated intermediate technologies taken by the developed world. Leapfrogging directly to the most advanced technologies avoids legacy infrastructures and long turnover times, allowing innovation and deployment on an accelerated scale.

Your Observations

Question for consideration:

As you read through the passage above, what distinguishing features about the text stand out to you?

Example 2

Again, read through the excerpt below, which is the opening to a longer text.  What do you notice while reading, without knowing much about the source overall?

Example 2

“Will the Tesla Model 3 recharge the U.S. electric vehicle market?”

Few product launches in recent memory have captured as much attention as last week’s unveiling of the Tesla Model 3 electric vehicle (EV), Tesla’s first vehicle pitched at the mass market.

Orders were flooding in even before Tesla CEO Elon Musk revealed the car to a giddy audience last Thursday evening, with prospective buyers queuing at Tesla stores throughout the day to place a deposit on a vehicle they might not even receive for two years or more.

Musk made the case for EVs being “really important for the future of the world,” combating rising greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution.

The Model 3 is really important for the future of Tesla and the future of EVs. It promises the sales growth that automotive wunderkind Tesla needs to survive and renews interest in a technology that is yet to have significant real-world impact. Yet even with the introduction of Tesla’s flashy new sedan, more pieces need to be in place before the EV market goes truly mainstream.

Battery prices dropping

When the Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid and Nissan Leaf battery-electric vehicle hit U.S. showrooms in December 2010, the price of gasoline was rising, and so were expectations for the future of EVs.

Shortly after, President Obama articulated the goal of having one million EVs on U.S. roads by 2015, and committed billions of investment in EV manufacturing capacity, recharging infrastructure deployment and vehicle purchase incentives.

Your Observations

Question for consideration:

As you read through the passage above, what distinguishing features about the text stand out to you?

Example 3

Example 3

“Cannibalism in the Cars”

I visited St. Louis lately, and on my way West, after changing cars at Terre Haute, Indiana, a mild, benevolent-looking gentleman of about forty-five, or maybe fifty, came in at one of the way-stations and sat down beside me. We talked together pleasantly on various subjects for an hour, perhaps, and I found him exceedingly intelligent and entertaining. When he learned that I was from Washington, he immediately began to ask questions about various public men, and about Congressional affairs; and I saw very shortly that I was conversing with a man who was perfectly familiar with the ins and outs of political life at the Capital, even to the ways and manners, and customs of procedure of Senators and Representatives in the Chambers of the national Legislature. Presently two men halted near us for a single moment, and one said to the other:

“Harris, if you’ll do that for me, I’ll never forget you, my boy.”

My new comrade’s eye lighted pleasantly. The words had touched upon a happy memory, I thought. Then his face settled into thoughtfulness—almost into gloom. He turned to me and said,

“Let me tell you a story; let me give you a secret chapter of my life—a chapter that has never been referred to by me since its events transpired. Listen patiently, and promise that you will not interrupt me.”

I said I would not, and he related the following strange adventure, speaking sometimes with animation, sometimes with melancholy, but always with feeling and earnestness.

Your Observations

Question for consideration:

As you read through the passage above, what distinguishing features about the text stand out to you?

Example 4

Example 4

“Hybrid Vehicle”

A hybrid vehicle uses two or more distinct types of power, such as internal combustion engine+electric motor,[1] e.g. in diesel-electric trains using diesel engines and electricity from overhead lines, and submarines that use diesels when surfaced and batteries when submerged. Other means to store energy include pressurized fluid, in hydraulic hybrids.

Heavy vehicles

Hybrid power trains use diesel-electric or turbo-electric to power railway locomotives, buses, heavy goods vehicles, mobile hydraulic machinery, and ships. A diesel/turbine engine drives an electric generator or hydraulic pump, which powers electric/hydraulic motor(s) – strictly an electric/hydraulic transmission (not a hybrid), unless it can accept power from outside. With large vehicles conversion losses decrease, and the advantages in distributing power through wires or pipes rather than mechanical elements become more prominent, especially when powering multiple drives — e.g. driven wheels or propellers. Until recently most heavy vehicles had little secondary energy storage, e.g. batteries/hydraulic accumulators — excepting non-nuclear submarines, one of the oldest production hybrids, running on diesels while surfaced and batteries when submerged. Both series and parallel setups were used in WW2 submarines.

Your Observations

Question for consideration:

As you read through the passage above, what distinguishing features about the text stand out to you?

Example 5

One last time, read through the excerpt below. What do you notice while reading, without knowing much about the source overall?

Example 5

The Influence of Intersections on Fuel Consumption in Urban Arterial Road Traffic: A Single Vehicle Test in Harbin, China”

Abstract

The calculating method for fuel consumption (FC) was put forward and calibrated and the characteristics of the fuel consumption on intersections were analyzed based on 18 groups of vehicular operating data which were acquired from the test experiment of a single vehicle along the urban arterial roads in Harbin, China. The results obtained show that 50.36% of the fuel consumption for the test vehicle was used at the area of intersections compared with 28.9% of the influencing distance and 68.5% of the running time; and 78.4% of them was burnt at the stages of acceleration and idling. Meanwhile, the type (c) of the vehicular operating status was illustrated to be the worst way of reducing fuel consumption, the causes were analyzed and four improvement strategies were put forward.

Introduction

Statistically, one-third of the gasoline was exhausted by autos worldwide each year; and energy supply had become one of huge challenges for human beings. Consequently, 3 main fuel consumption reduction technologies were put forward and implemented from the aspects of vehicles, driving behaviors and traffic management and control respectively. Above all, advanced engine technologies, which were usually improved by auto makers and researchers, were gradually applied including hybrid electric engine, and turbocharger technology. For instance, hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) were proved to be successful to reduce the fuel consumption; many relative strategies and methods were proposed to save the HEVs fuel consumption. Hu et al. and Yang et al. addressed the electrochemical energy buffers and robust coordinated control applied for the HEVs separately and the results showed that the proposed strategy could improve the fuel economy [1,2]. Hu et al. and Li et al. discussed the two optimization-based and dynamic programming-based global optimal energy management strategies for the plug-in hybrid electric bus (PHEBs) [3,4]; Sun et al. developed a PHEVs energy management algorithm to achieve enhanced fuel economy under different traffic flow information conditions [5]. Zheng et al. analyzed the effect of battery temperature on fuel consumption of fuel cell hybrid vehicles (FCHVs) [6]; Hu et al. discussed the optimal dimensioning or longevity-conscious dimensioning and power management for the fuel cell hybrid buses (FCHBs) with the method of convex programming and the findings showed that they are optimal and efficient [7,8]. Meanwhile, stop-start technology (STT) can save about 5~15% fuel consumption [9]; and the turbocharger technology can also reduce fuel consumption for the vehicles and be used widely.

Your Observations

Question for consideration:

As you read through the passage above, what distinguishing features about the text stand out to you?

 

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