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A matter of style

§ Blogging · Tools & software · Design thinking

Eric Meyer has created a rather nifty colour blending widget which calculates a palette between any two given colours. Fun (and funky JavaScript) and if nothing else, it’s useful for calculating the midpoint between two colours.

  • Matt has posted a list of online style guides. The Guardian’s style guide has a great introduction:

    One says it should not be necessary, but it is very obvious all round the Guardian office that uncomfortably many people involved in producing and shaping text for the paper rely more on the casual question, ‘What’s the style for x?’ and the casual answer, ‘I think it’s probably y.’ Journalists who are not sufficiently interested in house style to check the house style guide are not on the face of it very likely to be much interested in style at all.

    [...]

    House style is the means by which a newspaper seeks to ensure that where there are permissible variants in spellings, the use of acronyms and so forth, a unified approach to these matters is adopted to help in disseminating a sense of rationality and authority in the use of language. What it does not mean is imposing a unified writing style on the newspaper.

    The Guardian style guide is an alphabetic list of common misspellings, misnomers and misuses. Here’s a few highlights from A:

    accents
    include all accents on French words (but not anglicised French words such as cafe; exception: exposé, to avoid confusion with expose), and umlauts on German words. Do not use accents on other languages
    addendum
    plural addendums not addenda
    aggravate
    to make worse, not to annoy
    Albright, Madeleine
    former US secretary of state; Mrs Albright, not Ms, after first mention
    amok
    not amuck
    annex
    verb
    annexe
    noun

    One particular area the style guide disagree on is the capitalisation of World Wide Web, the Web, the Internet and the Net. In 1996, Tim Berners-Lee said the Web should be capitalised to distinguish it from a spider’s web. Nowadays, the Guardian and the Times say all lower case; the Economist says to capitalise as does Carnegie Mellon. All the newspapers agree that website should be one word and lower case; Carnegie Mellon says it should be Web site. Personally I swing the capitalisation way.