Another Reason Not to Double Space (and more from the mailbag)


 I recently wrote a column pointing out that the practice of putting two spaces between sentences is obsolete, rooted in the days when typewriters gave every character the same amount of space.

Reader Cyndy, a professional typesetter (now referred to as a “desktop publisher”) who studied typesetting in college, had a lot of extra insight.

“When typing on a typewriter was the norm, double spaces indeed made the paragraphs easier to read. But when typesetting on computers came along, the issue of justifying a paragraph became the issue. (No staggered right anymore. It was a smooth line on both vertical sides of the paragraph or story.)

If you put a double space in there, justifying the type may have caused it to be ragged on the left side, because if the sentence ended at the end of the line and there was a double space, then there would be a space at the beginning of the next line, thereby killing the smooth vertical line.

Here's some more good stuff I got from readers recently.

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