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Microsoft Word Is Taking Sides in the “Great” Spacing Debate

Recently, Microsoft has started upgrading its error policy for Microsoft Word and is currently reporting the two spaces after a period as a mistake. The update has not arrived yet to the users, but it will shortly be available for desktop versions in the following months. The users that would still like to press the space button two times after the end of a sentence will be able to dismiss Word’s corrections.

The double space error has started almost nine years ago with the statement of Farhad Manjoo that reported it as being “inarguably wrong.” The debate has continued for the next years, and more and more people engaged in taking sides and claim their beliefs on this matter.

Kirk Gregersen is the partner director of program management at Microsoft Word. During his interview for the Verge, he declared that the upcoming upgrade is a stylistic choice that may not be accepted by all the writers.

Microsoft Word changes its error policy

Therefore, the developing team is currently assessing the capabilities of the program to adapt to the desires of its users. The trend to double-tap after inserting a period in a text has started long ago during the typewriter generation. Since the typewriters mostly use monospace fonts, all the characters occupied the same size in the text, making it hard to identify the spaces.

Even though the proportional fonts arrived in 1970 and were even more upgraded with the launch of computers, the habit passed from one generation to another.

The idea of double spacing is characterized as being less efficient, but many are doubting that this criterion should be considered as an impediment for time management. However, writing a paragraph using the correct stylebook might result in a document with a simple style, with a clean appearance and visually appealing to the eye in Microsoft Word.

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