Author Topic: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.  (Read 5125 times)

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Offline Rapunzel

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Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« on: December 02, 2011, 11:20:52 PM »

Online Oceander

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2011, 09:47:36 AM »
Can I tell you another thing?  You're so effing wrong it isn't even funny.  Who says that?  People who actually read, that's who.  A second space breaks the type-line and signals the end of one sentence and the start of another.  Why is that a useful hint?  Because it allows the reader's peripheral vision - and that is what we read with as we scan across a line - your peripheral vision is doing the first estimate of what's coming up next - to differentiate an acronym with periods from the end of a sentence.

Below is a basic example (a better example would be a paragraph with more than two sentences, but I really don't feel like putting that much effort into responding to the ravings of an incompetent lunatic).  Scan through the two samples at a medium to quick reading pace - the sort of pace you might use if you were trying to get to the point of an inane article like the one above - and see if that double space doesn't add a slight, marginal bit to the ability to tell where the first sentence stops and the second sentence begins.

G. Washington was the first President of the U.S. who decided to only hold office for two terms. Who decided to only hold office for two terms after G. Washington's decision, and why did it become an institutional, but not Constitutional, limit?

G. Washington was the first President of the U.S. who decided to only hold office for two terms.  Who decided to only hold office for two terms after G. Washington's decision, and why did it become an institutional, but not Constitutional, limit?

Offline Lipstick on a Hillary

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2011, 10:06:43 AM »
Mr. Manjoo has too much time on his hands.

Offline Chieftain

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2011, 10:12:03 AM »
Islamic Grammar Rage Boy...

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2011, 12:08:15 PM »
Much ado, Manjoo, about nothing.
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Offline massadvj

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2011, 12:12:45 PM »
Can I tell you another thing?  You're so effing wrong it isn't even funny.  Who says that?  People who actually read, that's who.  A second space breaks the type-line and signals the end of one sentence and the start of another.  Why is that a useful hint?  Because it allows the reader's peripheral vision - and that is what we read with as we scan across a line - your peripheral vision is doing the first estimate of what's coming up next - to differentiate an acronym with periods from the end of a sentence.

Below is a basic example (a better example would be a paragraph with more than two sentences, but I really don't feel like putting that much effort into responding to the ravings of an incompetent lunatic).  Scan through the two samples at a medium to quick reading pace - the sort of pace you might use if you were trying to get to the point of an inane article like the one above - and see if that double space doesn't add a slight, marginal bit to the ability to tell where the first sentence stops and the second sentence begins.

G. Washington was the first President of the U.S. who decided to only hold office for two terms. Who decided to only hold office for two terms after G. Washington's decision, and why did it become an institutional, but not Constitutional, limit?

G. Washington was the first President of the U.S. who decided to only hold office for two terms.  Who decided to only hold office for two terms after G. Washington's decision, and why did it become an institutional, but not Constitutional, limit?

Completely agree.
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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #6 on: December 03, 2011, 12:39:49 PM »
In typing class, they taught us to use two spaces after the period. When I became a newspaper reporter, I had to adjust to inserting only one space.  :shrug:
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Offline Rapunzel

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #7 on: December 03, 2011, 02:49:45 PM »
I don't remember ever using anything but two spaces.  :shrug:

Offline Lipstick on a Hillary

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #8 on: December 03, 2011, 02:52:59 PM »
Me neither.  I was taught to do that in high school too.

Offline billva

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2012, 04:43:00 PM »
I use two spaces after a period and will continue to do so.

Offline massadvj

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2012, 04:55:36 PM »
I use two spaces after a period and will continue to do so.

Be very careful.  In the future, this is how you will be identified as a subversive.
"She only coughs when she lies."

Offline Chieftain

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2012, 05:28:12 PM »
Is this what Slate has come to??

What's the word count on this drivel..??


Offline FML

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2012, 07:02:18 PM »
http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2011/01/space_invaders.html

 
 Samantha Jacobs, a reading and journalism teacher at Norwood High School in Norwood, Col.,   told me that she requires her students to use two spaces after a period instead of one, even though she acknowledges that style manuals no longer favor that approach.

First, I just don't believe him about the teacher. 

Second, he is just wrong.    As a practical matter, however, there is nothing wrong with using two spaces after concluding punctuation marks unless an instructor or editor requests that you do otherwise. http://www.mla.org/style/style_faq/mlastyle_spaces

Third, Col means Colonel.  CO means Colorado. 

 

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #13 on: April 16, 2012, 10:52:17 PM »
If I didn't use two spaces after a period, Sister Mary Carmina would whoop my knuckles with a ruler.     :laugh:
"It aint what you don't know that kills you.  It's what you know that aint so!" ...Theodore Sturgeon

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Online mystery-ak

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2012, 10:59:22 PM »
If I didn't use two spaces after a period, Sister Mary Carmina would whoop my knuckles with a ruler.     :laugh:

OMG.....Sister Cecelia.....typing teacher would walk up and down the aisle with her hands behind her holding a ruler..lol


btw...I never got hit I was a good little Catholic girl...... :tongue2:

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Offline Atomic Cow

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #15 on: April 16, 2012, 11:05:40 PM »
I had numerous professors in graduate school, and one in undergrad, who would take off a letter grade for a single grammatical or spelling error.  Not double spacing after a period was one of the infractions they would get you for.
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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #16 on: April 17, 2012, 01:29:58 AM »
The graphics types who claim that two spaces after a period messes up the visual flow of a paragraph are both correct and wrong at the same time - yes, it does break up the flow but, contrary to their assertions, that break is needed to make it easier to identify the beginning and end of each sentence in the middle of a paragraph.

Offline Puss-N-Boots

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #17 on: April 18, 2012, 02:40:10 PM »
Coming from a military background, where format was dictated down to the width of the margins and how many spaces were allowed and where, I can say this writer is incorrect.  Right there in the Navy Correspondence Manual it is written that two spaces are always required after a period that ends a sentence.  If I didn't put in those two spaces, Gunnery Sergeant Denton would come thundering into my office and throw whatever document I created right back in my face.  She was a fearsome woman, and I've used two spaces ever since.

I seriously thought she was going to hit me with the communications SOP one day.  She scared the daylights out of me.
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Offline andy58-in-nh

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #18 on: April 18, 2012, 03:06:23 PM »
I do not ever recall the "two period rule" from my study of the old Strunk and White manual, nor from any other.  I must admit that such a practice does lend an element of superior readability to proportionately-spaced text, but it also increases the amount of physical space necessary to express the identical thought.

Not that such an outcome is always undesirable; as when for example, one is assigned a five-page report.  The assignment may be accomplished with less effort by simply employing more open space.  And by using briefer sentences. 

The one rule of style that I absolutely cling to with resolute firmness is not ever ending a sentence with a preposition.

Doing so always messes things up.

Cheers!  :beer:   
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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #19 on: April 19, 2012, 11:22:08 AM »
In high school typing class, we were told to use two spaces, so I did. When I became a newspaper reporter, I was told to use one, so I did. It's hardly a matter of life and death, though!
A day without sunshine is like, you know, night.

Offline jmyrlefuller

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #20 on: April 20, 2012, 10:09:07 PM »
When I was introduced to keyboarding in elementary/middle school, two spaces was the rule, primarily because monospace was still popular.

Then, when we started getting into typing long papers, the English teacher told me only one, because the word processor (MS Word) would take care of the proper spacing.

As I understand it: if you're using a monospace font (e.g. Courier), it's 2, but if it's Times Roman or the like, only 1 is necessary.

Online Oceander

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Re: Why you should never, ever use two spaces after a period.
« Reply #21 on: April 20, 2012, 11:58:10 PM »
When I was introduced to keyboarding in elementary/middle school, two spaces was the rule, primarily because monospace was still popular.

Then, when we started getting into typing long papers, the English teacher told me only one, because the word processor (MS Word) would take care of the proper spacing.

As I understand it: if you're using a monospace font (e.g. Courier), it's 2, but if it's Times Roman or the like, only 1 is necessary.

The word processor - at least MS Word - doesn't add a second space; it does "kern" the letters (technically, the glyphs) so that they fit together properly (i.e., some letter combinations should have more space between them than other combinations), but it won't add a full space.


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