TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Leading Zeros?

Re: Leading Zeros?

Jeffrey Mattox (jmat@withheld)
Fri, 18 Feb 2005 22:54:51 -0600

[Please withhold my email address for spam avoidance reasons.]

To Robert Bonomi:

I have tried emailing you privately, but my messages always bounce.

I have seen many of your posts in the TELECOM Digest. Your comments
would be more effective if you didn't overuse punctuation marks. You
are obviously trying to add emphasis to your writing, as if you are
speaking, but excessive and misused punctuation marks just slow down
and distract the reader. Writing and speech are two different things.

For example, this paragraph is wild with unnecessary punctuation and

If you want data preserved "exactly as entered', all you have
to do is *SAY*SO*. If you don't say, Excel 'guesses', based on
what is "correct _most_ of the time". If it 'guesses wrongly',
that is not a failing of the program -- after all, "ROM" in a
computer does *NOT* mean "read operator's mind". <grin>

This would be better:

If you want data preserved exactly as entered, all you have
to do is say so. If you don't say, Excel guesses, based on
what is correct most of the time. If it guesses wrongly,
that is not a failing of the program -- after all, ROM in a
computer does not mean "read operator's mind". <grin>

Most dictionaries have a section about proper use of punctuation and
capitalization. Please take a look.

I repeat: Writing and speech are two different things.

I'm not a writing expert; just an engineer interested in reading your
posts in TELECOM. When I see one of your posts now, I tend now to
skip over it because of the difficulty I anticipate in reading it.
(All you language experts out there are now free to critique this



[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Dear Respectful Jeff, I have often
wondered if I could require writers here to be familiar with and
make use of the _Chicago Manual on Style_ as it would make my job
a lot easier also. PAT]

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