Re: Numerals and Bullets

Subject: Re: Numerals and Bullets
From: George Allaman <gallama -at- LOOKOUT -dot- ECTE -dot- USWC -dot- USWEST -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 5 Jan 1996 14:31:17 -0700

On Fri, 5 Jan 1996, Elizabeth Carmack wrote:

> Greetings Folks: I have a question about the use of numerals. I
> understand that style rules say spell out whole numbers between zero
> and nine and use numerals for 10 and above. But what if the number is
> linked to a particular measurement, like miles, cubic inches, etc.?
> Some style guides say always use numerals for certain specific
> measurements, others don't address it. I think writing "a
> 1-cubic-inch tube" or "a 3-mile-radius" looks funny. What is the
> consensus out there?

> And a question on bullets: When using a bulleted list, is it proper
> to capitalize the first letter of the first word in each item even if
> they are not complete sentences? And what about punctuation? I say
> semicolons to separate them if they are complete sentences and commas
> if they are not. Thanks for your comments.

I find these consensus-on-styles threads a very instructive supplement
to my Style manual, so I'm contributing.

I say when two words are hyphenated, or combined in any way, they should
be the same format, unless it is extremely awkward to do this. One-man
band good; 1-man band bad. Twelve million dollar deal good; $12 million
deal bad. Not great, but acceptable: an annoying 4,694,002-second
wait. This violates journalistic style as I know it, but this ain't

In the bulleted (or any other) list, follow normal rules: capitalize
initial letter and use period if it forms (or finishes) a complete
sentence; neither if it is an isolated phrase. I would never use commas
in a bulleted list, but I would in a list that was in paragraph format.
Good: I went to the store, the bowling alley, the bar, and then home.

|George Allaman | |
|Tech Writer | <clever, meaningful |
|Denver, Colorado | quip which somehow |
|Office (303) 624-1619 | summarizes my life |
|Home (303) 771-8060 | philosophy> |
|Alternate: georgea -at- csn -dot- net | |

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