[OT] Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute "it is" without changing your inteded m

Discussion in 'Python' started by Bengt Richter, Jan 18, 2006.

  1. Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)

    Write the contraction "it's" only when you want its meaning
    to be "it is," otherwise it's wrong ;-)

    OTOH, how does one punctuate the posessive of a word per se?
    E.g., the first letter of "it" is "i", but can one write that
    as "it"'s first letter is "i," or it's first letter is "i" ? ;-)
    And how many "it"s (?) are there in the previous sentence?

    I wonder if "Eats Leaves and Shoots" (a book on punctuation) has something on that.
    (vs, "Eats, Leaves, and Shoots" -- panda vs gunslinger).

    Regards,
    Bengt Richter
    Bengt Richter, Jan 18, 2006
    #1
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  2. Bengt Richter

    Fuzzyman Guest

    Re: Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute "it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    Bengt Richter wrote:
    > Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    > is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    > embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    > If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)
    >


    Making grammatical errors in the subject of a post on gramamtical
    errors must be embarrasing. ;-)

    > Write the contraction "it's" only when you want its meaning
    > to be "it is," otherwise it's wrong ;-)
    >
    > OTOH, how does one punctuate the posessive of a word per se?
    > E.g., the first letter of "it" is "i", but can one write that
    > as "it"'s first letter is "i," or it's first letter is "i" ? ;-)
    > And how many "it"s (?) are there in the previous sentence?
    >


    Don't recall an answer to this one in "Eats, Shoots and Leaves".

    The first one is clearer :

    "it"'s first letter is "i"

    All the best,


    Fuzzyman
    http://www.voidspace.org.uk

    > I wonder if "Eats Leaves and Shoots" (a book on punctuation) has something on that.
    > (vs, "Eats, Leaves, and Shoots" -- panda vs gunslinger).
    >
    > Regards,
    > Bengt Richter
    Fuzzyman, Jan 18, 2006
    #2
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  3. Fredrik Lundh, Jan 18, 2006
    #3
  4. Bengt Richter

    Steve Holden Guest

    Re: Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute "it is"without changing your inteded meaning.

    Fuzzyman wrote:
    > Bengt Richter wrote:
    >
    >>Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    >>is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    >>embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    >>If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)
    >>

    >
    >
    > Making grammatical errors in the subject of a post on gramamtical
    > errors must be embarrasing. ;-)
    >

    Almost as *embarrassing* as making two spelling errors in one sentence
    complaining about grammatical errors (though I'll charitably accept the
    second one as a typo, and gladly hold my hands up to being a dreadful
    committer of the typographical error myself). What grammatical errors
    were you trying to point out, by the way?

    >
    >>Write the contraction "it's" only when you want its meaning
    >>to be "it is," otherwise it's wrong ;-)
    >>
    >>OTOH, how does one punctuate the posessive of a word per se?
    >>E.g., the first letter of "it" is "i", but can one write that
    >>as "it"'s first letter is "i," or it's first letter is "i" ? ;-)
    >>And how many "it"s (?) are there in the previous sentence?
    >>

    >
    >
    > Don't recall an answer to this one in "Eats, Shoots and Leaves".
    >
    > The first one is clearer :
    >
    > "it"'s first letter is "i"
    >
    >

    Best of all is to eschew the unknown and adopt a phrasing that gives an
    unambiguously correct answer: 'The first letter of "it" is "i"'.

    regards
    Steve
    --
    Steve Holden +44 150 684 7255 +1 800 494 3119
    Holden Web LLC www.holdenweb.com
    PyCon TX 2006 www.python.org/pycon/
    Steve Holden, Jan 18, 2006
    #4
  5. Re: Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute "it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    "The pronominal possessives hers, its, theirs, yours, and oneself have
    no apostrophe."

    Strunk & White, The Elements of Style. Section II.1

    The Elements is a classic masterpiece of concision and lucidity, unlike
    Eats, Shoots, Sells Books, and Leaves.

    rpd
    BartlebyScrivener, Jan 18, 2006
    #5
  6. Bengt Richter

    Fuzzyman Guest

    Re: Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute "it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    BartlebyScrivener wrote:
    > "The pronominal possessives hers, its, theirs, yours, and oneself have
    > no apostrophe."
    >
    > Strunk & White, The Elements of Style. Section II.1
    >
    > The Elements is a classic masterpiece of concision and lucidity, unlike
    > Eats, Shoots, Sells Books, and Leaves.
    >


    Which is however eminently more readable, except perhaps for the
    overlong introduction...

    All the best,


    Fuzzyman
    http://www.voidspace.org.uk/python/index.shtml

    > rpd
    Fuzzyman, Jan 18, 2006
    #6
  7. Bengt Richter

    Peter Hansen Guest

    Re: [OT] Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute"it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    Bengt Richter wrote:
    > Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    > is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    > embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    > If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)


    Maybe we can also hold forth on "which" vs. "that", proper use of "I"
    versus "me" (usually the opposite of what many do), "each" vs. "all",
    and when to use "whom". Also throw in the old stand-bys "they're" and
    "their" and other homonyms, but consider that often the mistake is not
    cause by a poor grasp of grammar but simply by writing too quickly, as
    one sometimes "hears" the words incorrectly in one's mind as one types,
    and then not proofreading adequately. (That's my excuse: I always catch
    "their" swapped with "they're" when proofreading, but I do sometimes use
    the wrong one when I write quickly.)

    Of course, even the best of us make such mistakes, and holding everyone
    to task for it is probably not going to help. This is a problem which
    only constant and instrusive reminders would cure, and the cure would be
    far worse than the disease.

    > OTOH, how does one punctuate the posessive of a word per se?
    > E.g., the first letter of "it" is "i", but can one write that
    > as "it"'s first letter is "i," or it's first letter is "i" ? ;-)


    When a construction is awkward, pick a different one. '''The first
    letter of the word "it" is "i"''' should be just fine.

    > I wonder if "Eats Leaves and Shoots" (a book on punctuation) has something on that.
    > (vs, "Eats, Leaves, and Shoots" -- panda vs gunslinger).


    Eats Shoots and Leaves: less cowardly than leaving _then_ shooting...
    also the actual name of the book. ;-)

    -Peter
    Peter Hansen, Jan 18, 2006
    #7
  8. Bengt Richter

    Spellman Guest

    Re: Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute "it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    Fuzzyman wrote:
    > BartlebyScrivener wrote:
    > > "The pronominal possessives hers, its, theirs, yours, and oneself have
    > > no apostrophe."
    > >
    > > Strunk & White, The Elements of Style. Section II.1
    > >
    > > The Elements is a classic masterpiece of concision and lucidity, unlike
    > > Eats, Shoots, Sells Books, and Leaves.
    > >

    >
    > Which is however eminently more readable, except perhaps for the
    > overlong introduction...
    >

    My favorite grammar book, Patricia T. O'Conner's "Woe Is I," is
    readable as well as concise and lucid. Here's how she explains it (or
    rather "it's" vs. "its"): If the word you want can be replaced by "it
    is," you want "it's." If not, use "its." (By the way, her chapter
    titles are a hoot; the one on punctuation is called "Comma Sutra.")
    Spellman, Jan 18, 2006
    #8
  9. Bengt Richter

    Spellman Guest

    Re: Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute "it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    Fuzzyman wrote:
    > BartlebyScrivener wrote:
    > > "The pronominal possessives hers, its, theirs, yours, and oneself have
    > > no apostrophe."
    > >
    > > Strunk & White, The Elements of Style. Section II.1
    > >
    > > The Elements is a classic masterpiece of concision and lucidity, unlike
    > > Eats, Shoots, Sells Books, and Leaves.
    > >

    >
    > Which is however eminently more readable, except perhaps for the
    > overlong introduction...
    >

    My favorite grammar book, Patricia T. O'Conner's "Woe Is I," is
    readable as well as concise and lucid. Here's how she explains it (or
    rather "it's" vs. "its"): If the word you want can be replaced by "it
    is," you want "it's." If not, use "its." (By the way, her chapter
    titles are a hoot; the one on punctuation is called "Comma Sutra.")
    Spellman, Jan 18, 2006
    #9
  10. Re: Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute "it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    On 2006-01-18, Fuzzyman <> wrote:
    >
    > Bengt Richter wrote:
    >> Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    >> is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    >> embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    >> If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)

    >
    > Making grammatical errors in the subject of a post on gramamtical
    > errors must be embarrasing. ;-)


    Not really. It's one of the basic laws of Usenet. All
    complaints about grammar/spelling will contain grammar/spelling
    mistakes. Nothing you can do about it.

    --
    Grant Edwards grante Yow! Yow! I want to mail
    at a bronzed artichoke to
    visi.com Nicaragua!
    Grant Edwards, Jan 18, 2006
    #10
  11. Re: Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute "it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    On 18 Jan 2006 04:19:37 -0800, "Fuzzyman" <> wrote:

    >
    >Bengt Richter wrote:
    >> Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    >> is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    >> embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    >> If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)
    >>

    >
    >Making grammatical errors in the subject of a post on gramamtical
    >errors must be embarrasing. ;-)

    Yeah. I could probably get away with claiming that I inteded one error to soften the
    blow of my demonstration of superiority, but actually neither was intentional.
    Perhaps it worked out for the best ;-)

    Regards,
    Bengt Richter
    Bengt Richter, Jan 18, 2006
    #11
  12. Re: [OT] Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute"it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    Bengt Richter wrote:

    > Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    > is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    > embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    > If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)



    For all three of the people on the Internet who haven't
    seen this:

    http://www.angryflower.com/bobsqu.gif

    And in colour:
    http://www.angryflower.com/aposter.html



    --
    Steven.
    Steven D'Aprano, Jan 19, 2006
    #12
  13. On 2006-01-19, Steven D'Aprano <> wrote:

    >> Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    >> is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    >> embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    >> If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)

    >
    > For all three of the people on the Internet who haven't
    > seen this:
    >
    > http://www.angryflower.com/bobsqu.gif
    >
    > And in colour:
    > http://www.angryflower.com/aposter.html


    But wait, if you follow the rules on the poster, you'd use an
    apostrophe for the possive of "it", right?

    --
    Grant Edwards grante Yow! I'm losing my
    at hair...did it go to
    visi.com ATLANTIC CITY??
    Grant Edwards, Jan 19, 2006
    #13
  14. Re: [OT] Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute"it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    Grant Edwards wrote:

    > On 2006-01-19, Steven D'Aprano <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>>Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    >>>is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    >>>embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    >>>If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)

    >>
    >>For all three of the people on the Internet who haven't
    >>seen this:
    >>
    >>http://www.angryflower.com/bobsqu.gif
    >>
    >>And in colour:
    >>http://www.angryflower.com/aposter.html

    >
    >
    > But wait, if you follow the rules on the poster, you'd use an
    > apostrophe for the possive of "it", right?


    But not if you actually followed the link I intended to
    send but forgot to:

    http://www.angryflower.com/its.gif


    --
    Steven.
    Steven D'Aprano, Jan 19, 2006
    #14
  15. Re: [OT] Nit: please don't user "it's" unless you can substitute"it is" without changing your inteded meaning.

    Steven D'Aprano wrote:

    >> But wait, if you follow the rules on the poster, you'd use an
    >> apostrophe for the possive of "it", right?

    >
    >
    > But not if you actually followed the link I intended to send but forgot to:
    >
    > http://www.angryflower.com/its.gif



    Dammit, wrong link. Serves me right for not letting the
    whole thing load before posting.

    http://www.angryflower.com/itsits.gif


    --
    Steven.
    Steven D'Aprano, Jan 19, 2006
    #15
  16. Bengt Richter

    Tim Roberts Guest

    Steven D'Aprano <> wrote:
    >
    >Bengt Richter wrote:
    >
    >> Typos happen to all of us, but in case you hadn't realized what "it's"
    >> is a contraction for ("it is"), now you do, and you can save yourself further
    >> embarrassment (assuming you care ;-).
    >> If your friends won't tell you, who will ;-)

    >
    >
    >For all three of the people on the Internet who haven't
    >seen this:
    >
    >http://www.angryflower.com/bobsqu.gif
    >
    >And in colour:
    >http://www.angryflower.com/aposter.html


    My own name gives me trouble with this. There is disagreement in the
    curmudgeon world as to whether I should refer to "the Roberts' computer",
    or "the Roberts's computer".

    I guess I'll just have to keep saying "that damn computer."
    --
    - Tim Roberts,
    Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.
    Tim Roberts, Jan 20, 2006
    #16
  17. On Fri, 20 Jan 2006 07:06:29 +0000, Tim Roberts wrote:

    > My own name gives me trouble with this. There is disagreement in the
    > curmudgeon world as to whether I should refer to "the Roberts' computer",
    > or "the Roberts's computer".
    >
    > I guess I'll just have to keep saying "that damn computer."



    In English, you would say "Roberts' computer".

    In ugly foreign languages like American, some people say "Roberts's
    computer", but they are wrong.

    *wink*



    --
    Steven.
    Steven D'Aprano, Jan 21, 2006
    #17
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