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All of these words mean "According to", but I'm wondering are there any different in use. For example, some of them might only be used as adj. or adv.; some of them might have other meanings.

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    I am too much tied up at the moment to give you an overview, but I suggest you query all of these terms on jukuu.com and iciba.com and try to find some differences based on the example sentences. – imrek Oct 5 '15 at 14:39
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    see 工具书(reference book)"实用汉语近义虚词词典" – user6065 Oct 5 '15 at 17:32
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    none used as adj. or adv., possible uses:介(prep。),名(n。),动(v。) – user6065 Oct 5 '15 at 19:33
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    "实用汉语近义虚词词典":依(介;动)/依据(介;名)/依照(介)[相同]都是介词,组成介词短语作状语,表示用某事物作为行为的前提或基础,相当于"按照"。"依据"和"依照"有时可以互换:1依据合同,你应当赔偿对方的损失。(依照✓依✕)2我相信法院会依据法律做出公正的判决。(依照✓依✕)3依照学校的规定,陈建国要被开除学籍。(依据✓依✕)4依照婚姻法,他们的婚姻是无效的。(依据✓依✕)[不同]1。"依据"主要表示在法律、规定或具体证据基础上进行,"依据"的一般是法律、规定等;"依照"主要表示按照原来的样子或情况进行,"依照"的可以是法律,规定,也可以是普通的事物,如习惯,计划、说法、意见等。"依据"一般都可以换成:"依照",但"依照"不一定能换成"依据":1依照惯例,中秋节要放三天假。(依据✓依✕)2这事别怪我,我可是依照老板的意思做的。(依据✓依✕)3把这件衣服拿去,依照原样再做一半。(依据✓依✕)4依照习惯,除夕晚上家家都要吃团圆饭。(依据✓依✕)5请依照规定的格式修改论文。(依据✓依✕)2。"依"一般用在单音节名词前,"依据、依照"不能和单音节词组合:<>依此类推 依法处理 依此入场 依样画葫芦 (依据✕依照✕) 1此时,各国运动员正一次入场(依据✕依照✕)2法官必须公正,必须依法办事。(依据✕依照✕)3你就依样画葫芦,照着做就是了。(依据✕依照✕) – user6065 Oct 5 '15 at 22:19
  • 3。"依"可组成"依A说/看来"的结构(A一人),表示从A的角度看问题;"依据、依照"无此用法:1依您说,这事怎么办?(依据✕依照✕)2依我说啊,大家都别去算了。(依据✕依照✕)3这事依我看没有问题。(依据✕依照✕)4。依我看来,林莉未必能找到更好的工作。(依据✕依照✕)4。"依"还有动词的用法,表示"听从、顺从";"依据、依照"无此用法:1我依你,今天咱们就去看电影吧。(依据✕依照✕)2要依杨明的话,咱们现在早就赶上火车了。(依据✕依照✕)3杰克,你就依了大伙,和我们一起去跳舞吧。(依据✕依照✕)5。"依据"还有名词的用法,指事情发生的证据;还有动词的用法,表示用某个情况作为依据。"依、依照"无此用法:1你有什么依据说我拿了他的钱包?(依✕依照✕)2说话要有依据,不能乱说。(依✕依照✕)3你这么处理,依据的是哪条法律?(依✕依照✕) – user6065 Oct 5 '15 at 22:20
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There are actually two ways to answer your question. I'm not sure which would be more helpful to you:

1) an etymological answer: why are these particular words being used in this particular way;

2) a grammatical answer: what syntactic differences exist between the words; what different kinds of sentences are they used in.

For me, I often find the etymological answer is more useful, in that I get more of a sense of what the speaker is thinking. Grammar often does not help that much in illuminating what someone is thinking, though it is essential for using the word correctly yourself.

I'll try the etymological approach here, and look at what 按, 照, 依, 憑, 根, and 據 are doing here.

按 = to press with the finger; imagine the judge running a finger down a list of rules.
依 = to lean on; to rely on something to hold you in a set position.
照 = to illuminate; in fact, this is a key word: you could take it to mean 'according to' all by itself, with modifications indicated by what's in front: 依照, 按照 are variations of 照; they both rely on light to some degree

憑 seems to be 'rely on' in a mental sense; it is closer to 靠 in meaning than 依. Of all the words here, 憑 is the furthest removed from the central meaning of 'according to'.

根 means root; in a more fig. or adverbial sense, it means to take something as a base, what something is built on
據 is another key word; it originally meant to support oneself with a staff. Light is not necessary for this. If one's staff is touching the ground (rooted, 根據) one knows one has a solid basis for action. One can also lean on one's staff 依據, and avoid slipping.

So basically there are two ideas here:
照 is to follow something that illuminates one's way. This is often realized as following someone's rules, methods, or example.
據 is to have a fixed point that allows one to act without mishap. This often suggests the idea of a basis for one's actions or beliefs

These two basic ideas can be modified by appropriate forms. 依 works with both 照 and 據; on the other hand 按 doesn't work with 據 (why press on a staff with one finger?) and 根 doesn't work with 照 (what is the basis of a lamp?)

This is what I see as the semantics involved; for grammar, the comment under your answer has perhaps more useful guidance.

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