On vs Off
On and off are two words that are used often, they may never be interchangeable but they get confusing at times. Both words may be used as preposition or as an adverb. Their usage in a sentence has similarities but with an opposite function or purpose.
The word on may be used as a preposition that usually means a spatial relationship of the object which is linked to the entire sentence. For example: “Amanda was found lying on the bathroom floor.” It can also be used as an adverb to modify the verb which answers the questions: “how, when and where”. Examples are: “Hazel and Fred got married on summer,” “Jade and Ann came for the meeting on time,” “the house on the river side.”
Off often refers to a state of operation, such as: “The lights are all off.” or “The heater was turned off when I got here.” When off is used as a preposition, the word links all nouns and pronouns on a particular sentence. An example would be the following: “Get off of me now!” or “I need to get off of work today.”
Even when the two words have similar sentence usage, there are a lot of differences that can be compared. On may mean that you are wearing an object; off however, implies removal of an object that was recently used or worn by the subject. Also, on may refer to closeness or close proximity of an object or person while off refers to distance between two subjects. Similarly on may refer to a continuation of an activity whereas off refers to discontinuation like “worked on,” ” cut off.”
The word ‘on’ when used in electronic devices, means that a machine is working in an operational mode; off on the other hand signifies the non operational state of an object or electronic gadget. In digital world on and off represents to discrete states, ‘on’ indicate positive or high and ‘off’ indicate negative or low. There is no in between state in digital world. For application purposes ‘on’ and ‘off’ are coded using binary numbers; on is coded as binary digit 1 and off as 0.
It is always an advantage to have in depth knowledge of words that are frequently used. More often than not, it is the common words that we tend to lack knowledge, especially when it comes to their real meaning and their proper sentence usage.
• Both on and off can be used in a sentence as an adverb or a preposition.
• Both may be used similarly but definitions of each are very diverse.