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Joined: May 12, 2006  (email not validated)
Comments posted: 11
Votes received: 32

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Compass directions are capitalized only if referring to a proper place, known by its compass direction. For example, South Bronx, South Central Los Angles, etc. Also, if you were vacationing in "The South" you would capitalize. Same logic applies to the West Wing of the white house.

Saying what direction to travel wouldn't justify capitalization.

automator November 6, 2006, 12:50pm

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Nah has it pretty much right. An impression, is just that, the impression that you get from a person, and your interpretation thereof. It generally is just a bit of the person's unique personality or mannerism, played for comedic weight.

An impersonation of someone, however, is trying to <b>be</b> that person, mimicking as much of their personality as possible.

To go with Nah's cop ...

An impression of a cop would be sauntering around with a puffed out chest, putting people under arrest and confiscating their donuts.

An impersonation of a cop would be dressing as a cop and writing traffic tickets.

automator October 30, 2006, 11:17am

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Remember, even if you have every intention of hosting an event annually, you should never refer to the first such event as the "First Annual." Especially if you're sending a press release to a newspaper. I've been, and have known, editors who trashed away PR that used the term "First Annual."

automator September 18, 2006, 2:19pm

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off the cuff, "I feel worry" seems right, but "I feel scare" feels wrong.

Nouns like scare require a definitive article, but worry and concern don't. Maybe that's the key.

automator September 14, 2006, 3:19pm

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All I could find was that quarter was used to describe a portion or area of town and that quarters was used to describe military housing. "Quarter" was used as a verb to describe the act up putting up military.

automator September 13, 2006, 8:03pm

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I'm not saying that five thousandths of a percent of $64 billion is not significant. It's certainly a lot of money.

But in working with figures, rounding, inaccuracy, and terms of mathematical calculation bring insignificance into the figures used.

For example:

When multiplying 4.5 times 3.25, your result is 14.625, but because the you only know to an exact amount the tenths figure (4.5) in the first item, that result must be rounded to the tenths place ... making it 14.6. If, however, you knew the first figure to be not 4.5 but 4.52, the result is 14.69, a figure that does not need to be rounded. Even if you knew the hundreths place to be zero, 4.50 times 3.25 is still 14.625, and know you know significance to the hundreths place -- 14.62.

Since its unlikely that in the original accounting or contracts, figures were recorded to the fourth place after the decimal point (when is the last time you took out a bank loan with an APR of 5.2546? I bet it was an APR of 5.25), any results from multiplication or division of the figures would only be mathematically significant to the second place after the decimal point. That they are financially significant is a non-issue.

automator July 26, 2006, 12:13pm

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While I don't doubt that a thousandth of a couple million dollars would be significant, I do doubt that such figures can be reliable (i.e. significant figures in the scientific sense).

automator July 20, 2006, 12:35pm

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You're close, Marsha.

4.975% would be "Four and nine-hundred seventy five thousandths percent" (fractional thousands).

Although why a legal office would have a need for significant figures to three decimal places is beyond my comprehension.

As to writing out numbers, I follow Associated Press style, which is to write out one through ten or any number that begins a sentence or quote, and use numerals for all numbers 11 and above. Decimal numbers are always written as numerals, in this style. But I suppose every industry can have its own standard.

automator July 19, 2006, 12:55pm

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<blockquote><i>Second, the QWERTY keyboard is MUCH more proficient at typing than an ABCDEF would be. ... I don't think I have heard of people who can type at 110 wpm (my brothers typing speed) or at 80 wpm (my typing speed) on an ABCDEF keyboard.</i></blockquote>

QWERTY was designed to slow typists (<i>"Frequently used pairs of letters were separated in an attempt to stop the typebars from intertwining and becoming stuck, thus forcing the typist to manually unstick the typebars and also frequently blotting the document." [wikipedia]</i>)

You use a lot of "e" and "r" and "t" in every day words -- so why are those letters in the top row, and not the home row of keys?

I've been a QWERTY user for 20 years, and my speed is about 80 wpm on a bad morning and a bit over 100 on a good afternoon when I'm full of coffee. I set up a secondary computer for training myself on the Dvorak keyboard, and in less than a year I've already passed 60 wpm. (Though I still have a hard time with numerals.)

Back to the OT: I personally dislike double spacing, but I know people young and old who like double spacing. My motto has become to do whatever each job requires. I my personal writing I single space. When I'm typing a job that requires double spacing, I double space. If I had a job that required me to capitalize President regardless of its context, I would -- follow the rules as they apply to each situation.

automator May 30, 2006, 7:37pm

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Taking myself back to journalism classes, "that" gives emotional distance and impersonality, compared to "who". It's use is similar to the journalistic tradition of always using "said" for everything attributed to a person. (A source never "states" or "exclaims" in a news story.)

automator May 22, 2006, 4:39pm

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I'd put in that it depends on which side was the most culturally important in raising the child. If the first generation mother's family were there for the child's every birthday, holiday, etc., while the second generation father's side only made appearances at birthdays until age ten and very few holidays, the child is second generation.

Think of it in terms of the Hispanic (non-white) category on demographic polls. My father is white, my mother is Hispanic -- I check the "caucasian" box because it was at my paternal grandparent's house that holidays were. The maternal, Hispanic, side had little to do with my eventual character.

After all, isn't first/second/third-generation just a mark of character to show how assimilated or unassimilated you are?

automator May 12, 2006, 6:48pm

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