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When I type a post, I enter a double space after a period and before the next sentence. For some reason OCN changes my double space to a single space.

Why is that? The only reason I can think of would be that of efficiency--the second spaces would be taking up a lot of extra disk space if every post had them.
 

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It's not just the second space, it deletes all consecutive spaces besides the first one. Like ya'll said, probably for efficiency. I'm the same way, though, I type two spaces after the end of a sentence.
 

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I think I remember being taught that it's grammatically correct to use 2 spaces... from English Composition I, but I'm not certain. I'd get my Bedford Handbook out, but I don't care that much.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Maian View Post
I think I remember being taught that it's grammatically correct to use 2 spaces... from English Composition I, but I'm not certain. I'd get my Bedford Handbook out, but I don't care that much.

Nope, it's one space. Also, I'm pretty sure that if people can't even tell "your" from "you're," they're not going to care about 1 vs. 2 spaces.
 

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" Grammar Girl here.

This week I have two topics for you: The number of spaces after a period at the end of a sentence, and whether you should use "who" or "that" to refer to people (and pets).

Now here's our first listener question.
<His friends believe it is antiquated to use two spaces after a period at the end of a sentence.>
Yes, the caller is correct and he's also right that a lot of people haven't heard about the change.

Two Spaces After a Period--The Old Way

Here's the deal: Most typewriter fonts are what are called monospaced fonts. That means every character takes up the same amount of space. An "i" takes up as much space as an "m," for example. When using a monospaced font, where everything is the same width, it makes sense to type two spaces after a period at the end of a sentence to create a visual break. For that reason, people who learned to type on a typewriter were taught to put two spaces after a period at the end of a sentence.

One Space After a Period--The New Way

But when you're typing on a computer, most fonts are proportional fonts, which means that characters are different widths. An "i" is more narrow than an "m," for example, and putting extra space between sentences doesn't do anything to improve readability.



Notice how in this example, the "i's" and "t" take up much less space in the proportional font than they do in the monospaced font.

Although how many spaces you use is ultimately a style choice, using one space is by far the most widely accepted and logical style. The Chicago Manual of Style (1), the AP Stylebook (2), and the Modern Language Association (3) all recommend using one space after a period at the end of a sentence. Furthermore, page designers have written in begging me to encourage people to use one space because if you send them a document with two spaces after the periods, they have to go in and take all the extra spaces out.

I know it's a hard habit to break if you were trained to use two spaces, but if you can, give one space a try. "

It appears you two are correct...

Source
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I learned about the one space/typewriter thing and have been trying to change my ways.

Old habits die hard.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by McStuff View Post
Why do 2 spaces? You're only supposed to use one anyway.
I learned about using two spaces in my very short stint in college back in 1998. I took some kind of class that was related to conducting business on computers. I think the course had some kind of name that implied learning how to write business letters and business e-mails. Anyway, whatever the name of the course was, it was drilled upon us to use two spaces at the end of every sentence. On top of that, the fonts were proportional just as they are now!

So why did we use two spaces after punctuation? The answer is simple: because there is a one space in between every word, and so therefore using two spaces after punctuation makes breaks between sentences much clearer.
 

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I always figured it deleted irrelevant letters to help stop spamful posts.

Spaces don't cost much hard disk space - even if there's millions of them.
 
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