One space, two space, me space, you space (was Re: [development] LinksDB vs. Links)

John Handelaar john at
Wed Aug 2 16:21:30 UTC 2006

Morbus Iff wrote:
> But anyways, I'm all for authoritative sources. What's the name of a 
> respected guide in your part of the world? Over here, we have Fowlers 
> and the Chicago Manual of Style.

There isn't one.  The Guardian has published its own
handbook but as you can see, it doesn't cover things
like this at all:,,184844,00.html

Neither does the BBC's:

I can't speak to the Times's one (the only other with
any name recognition) because there's no online reference
and it's rather a hidden text.

[There's a perception in the UK that US journalism could
do with fewer staff-level "style nazis" whose idea of
'factchecking' involves an insane level of needless
rewrites and the removal of anything which can't be
footnoted, no matter how blindingly obvious the fact
may be.  This, by way of explanation of why there's no
cultural preference for comprehensive style guides here.]

The notion that this is a UK/US divide is nonsense.

Yes, teachers always told us to use two.  But then when
I was told that, *everything* typed was monospace.
Proportional type doesn't require it, and no typesetter
does it since their own local rules prohibit it.

The real reason for using one space in web apps is
astoundingly simple, however -- only one will ever
be rendered by a browser anyway.

I think this is therefore moot (and in no small way


(Formerly someone who had to know this stuff professionally)

John Handelaar

E  john at    T +353 21 427 9033
M  +353 85 748 3790
Work in progress:

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