Re: Use fully-spelled numbers

Subject: Re: Use fully-spelled numbers
From: Chris Morton <salt -dot- morton -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Fri, 8 Feb 2013 09:27:55 -0800

*Number nine, number nine, number nine......*

On Thu, Feb 7, 2013 at 9:27 PM, Combs, Richard <richard -dot- combs -at- polycom -dot- com>wrote:

> Liu, Peter wrote:
>
> > Under what condition would you use fully spelled numbers (eg. Nine
> instead of
> > 9)? One developer always change all the numbers to letters. I found it
> harder
> > to recognize and read than the real numbers but wonder what is the
> proper way
> > of using the numbers?
>
> It depends. :-) Do you have a style guide? If so, follow that. If not, I'd
> recommend the Microsoft Manual of Style. It has a pretty thorough and
> (IMHO) eminently reasonable discussion of this issue. Here are some
> excerpts from version 3 (the one I have handy in electronic form)(note
> especially the first sentence; who decides doc conventions at your place,
> you or some developer?):
>
> The use of numerals versus words is primarily a matter of convention.
> Microsoft uses the following conventions:
>
> Use numerals for 10 and above. Spell out zero through nine if the number
> does not precede a unit of measure or is not used as input. For round
> numbers of 1 million or more, use a numeral plus the word, even if the
> prefix number is less than 10.
> Correct
> 10 screen savers
> 20 booklets
> 1,000
> one thousand
> five databases
> zero probability
> 7 million
> 7,990,000
>
> Incorrect
> 2 disks
> 0 offset
> eighteen books
> twelve functions
> 1 thousand
> 7 million and 990 thousand
>
> Use numerals for all measurements, even if the number is under 10. This is
> true whether the measurement is spelled out, abbreviated, or replaced by a
> symbol. Measurements include distance, temperature, volume, size, weight,
> points, picas, and so on, but generally not days, weeks, or other units of
> time. Bits and bytes are also considered units of measure.
> Correct
> 0 inches
> 3 feet, 5 inches
> 3.5-inch disk
> 0.75 gram
> 35mm camera
> 8 bits
> 1-byte error value
> two years
> ...
> Maintain consistency among categories of information; that is, if one
> number in a category requires a numeral, use numerals for all numbers in
> that category. When two numbers that refer to separate categories must
> appear together, spell out one of them.
> Correct
> One booklet has 16 pages, one has 7 pages, and the third has only 5 pages.
> ten 12-page booklets
> ...
> Represent numbers taken from examples or the interface exactly as they
> appear in the example or the interface.
>
> Use an en dash, not a hyphen, with negative numbers: -79.
>
> Avoid starting a sentence with a numeral. If necessary, add a modifier
> before a number. If starting a sentence with a number cannot be avoided,
> spell out the number.
> ...
>
> And much, much more. Highly recommended.
>
> HTH! And BTW, I hate that annoying little pig. :-)
>
> Richard G. Combs
> Senior Technical Writer
> Polycom, Inc.
> richardDOTcombs AT polycomDOTcom
> 303-223-5111
> ------
> rgcombs AT gmailDOTcom
> 303-903-6372
> ------
>
>
>
>
>
>
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for creating mobile help.

Learn more: http://bit.ly/WNaCzd

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