My current try is

  • Entwicklung von Anwendungen für ...

But I do not know if I have to add an article or use only an article as here:

  • Entwicklung von den Anwendungen für ...
  • Entwicklung der Anwendungen für ...
  • 1
    A bit more context would be helpful. Also, what did you find when you looked at a text book or did a web search for your suggested terms?
    – Robert
    Oct 7 '17 at 19:23
  • I mean grammatically what is right. When I use "von" to express Genitiv, do I need to use the word "den" after that.
    – jannagy02
    Oct 7 '17 at 19:30
  • Please edit your question instead of adding comments. Not all comments may be shown initially. Make it easy for people to read your question. Do add context, to avoid your question getting closed because it's not clear enough what you're asking. All of your translations could be possible. It depends on the context what I'd use.
    – Robert
    Oct 7 '17 at 19:39
  • Short answer: No, an article is not required when using von + Dative plural.
    – RHa
    Oct 8 '17 at 10:52

In German (as well as in English) you have three types of articles:

  • definite articles

    German: der, die, das, des, dem, den
    English: the


    Die Anwendung ist schnell. (singular)
    The application is fast.

    Die Anwendungen sind schnell. (plural)
    The applications are fast.

  • indefinite articles

    German: ein, eine, eines, einer, einem, einen
    English: a, an


    Eine Anwendung ist schnell. (singular)
    An application is fast.

But something interesting happens, if you want to create the plural version of this indefinite example. What you get is this:

Anwendungen sind schnell. (plural)
Applications are fast.

You don't use any article here. You can think of this as a word with zero letters, which is called "null article" (»Nullartikel« in German), which is just another way to say: »There is no article«

In German and in English this null article is the only way to build an indefinite plural form.

So let's look at your examples:

Die Entwicklung von Anwendungen für Dr. Müller ist mühsam.
The development of applications for Dr. Müller is painstaking.

Here we are talking about many applications (plural), but not about some special applications, but about just any applications, which means: indefinite. And you just learned: indefinite plural = no article (null article)

Die Entwicklung von den Anwendungen für Dr. Müller, die ich im Jahr 2016 geschrieben habe, waren etwas einfacher.
The development of the applications for Dr. Müller, which I wrote in 2016, was somewhat easier.

Here we still have plural, but now we are talking about some special applications (written in 2016). So plural + definite (+ masculine + dative case) = den in German (the in English).

Die Entwicklung der Anwendungen für Dr. Müller, die ich im Jahr 2016 geschrieben habe, waren etwas einfacher.

Here we just used a construction, where we use genitive case (which coincidentally results in the same English translation). Plural + definite + masculine + genitive case = der in German (and still the in English).

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