Re: [Fwd: Re: Avoid the Semicolon in Tech Writing?]
dmbrown -at- brown-inc -dot- com wrote:
I'll repeat: If the semicolon is used correctly, the reader won't
even notice it.
I disagree strongly.
So we disagree. I believe what I wrote.
You can do anything you want - or that your boss will let
you get away with.
I'm the boss. :)
But the point of the original question was whether using the semi-colon in technical documentation was a good idea or not.
No, it was whether anyone else had heard of this "avoid semicolons" stricture.
Using a sentence fragment doesn't automatically make a sentence unclear.
No, but there's no reason to use them unnecessarily.
This is bad:
If so-and-so, do A. Otherwise, do B.
This is good:
If so-and-so, do A; otherwise, do B.
If you want to use *those* words, you need *that* punctuation; otherwise, you have shoddy writing...even if you get the message across.
...if you want to
write them the way I showed, the semicolon is necessary.
Since the way you showed involves the semicolon, this is simply a circular argument.
Again, if you want to use those words, you need that punctuation.
On the other hand, if you think this:
A, or B and C and D, or E
is clearer than this:
A; B, C, and D; or E
then write it that way. We can disagree about that, too.
P.S. Of course, you won't get to write it that way in
my department. :)
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[Fwd: Re: Avoid the Semicolon in Tech Writing?]: From: dmbrown
Re: [Fwd: Re: Avoid the Semicolon in Tech Writing?]: From: Bruce Byfield
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