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Off capitalization questions
Nutter

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2052 posted 4:23 pm on Apr 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

What is the grammatically correct way to start these sentences?

:hover is used when you want...
.htaccess allows you to...

mod_rewrite allows you to...

The first two start with punctuation, and just look awkward. All three are words that are normally lowercase by default, and .Htaccess or Mod_rewrite aren't correct.

edit - 'Off' in the title should be 'Odd'. Hate those typos.

 

basenotes

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2052 posted 8:13 pm on Apr 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

I don't know what is grammatically correct but maybe you could reword it:

ie --

to do this, that and the other, use mod_rewrite..

etc

iamlost

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2052 posted 12:40 am on Apr 8, 2006 (gmt 0)

When I looked into this some years ago I was unable to find a definitive English grammar answer. As what I finally decided on is also used by major code organisations (i.e. Apache) I feel confident I made the correct decision: treat code as <code>.


<p><code>.htaccess</code> files provide a way to make configuration changes on a per-directory basis.</p>

The monospace <code> nicely differentiates the non-dictionary code term from the rest of the sentence. And it is nice semantic markup. Use CSS to spice to taste.

Adding the 'title' attribute or a link to a glossary definition can be nice touches that also emphasise the difference and importance of the term.

mm1220

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2052 posted 1:02 am on Apr 8, 2006 (gmt 0)

Perhaps the use of italics would be appropriate.

.htaccess allows people to ...

Nutter

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2052 posted 1:09 am on Apr 8, 2006 (gmt 0)

Here's the answer I got from an English teacher friend of my Mom's...

"Tech / language trumps all." Basically, if the punctuation needs to be there or the word has to be lower case it's ok to keep it that way.

Beagle

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2052 posted 2:36 am on Apr 8, 2006 (gmt 0)

I'd agree with Nutter. That's how scientific stuff is handled: "p53 expression was reduced..." Also names: "von Hippel-Lindau syndrome predisposes to..."

The bottom-line rule in punctuation and grammar is always "clarity above all," and I think that applies here. If something is meant to be lower case, there's probably a reason, and to capitalize it could be confusing. This would also keep me from using italics in place of capitalization; in the paragraph above, if I wrote "p53..." it would have a different meaning in genetics lingo.

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