Re: Numbered Lists in Technical Instructions

Subject: Re: Numbered Lists in Technical Instructions
From: Susan Fowler <sfowler -at- EJV -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 5 Jul 1994 09:44:02 EDT

Re: I favor the "1: texttext" format over the "1. texttext" format for this
arena, although it is nonstandard & violates the rule of Two Spaces After Every
Colon from English 101.

This "2 spaces after periods and colons" business is erroneous MOST of the time.
The 2 spaces are required for monospaced TYPED text (i.e., typed on a
typewriter), but not for proportionally spaced typeset or desktop-published

The reason is that in typeset or dtp text, the compositor (human or mechanical)
needs leeway to stretch or contract all spaces for justification and
line-fitting. In some systems, if you put two spaces, the compositor is forced
to use two spaces.

Having said that (one of my gripes--can you tell?), ASCII text is essentially
typed monospaced text, so the 2-space rule makes sense here.

--Susan Fowler
sfowler -at- ejv -dot- com

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