Real Punctuation for Programmers

A page set with moveable lead type

My fellow developers find it tedious, but I always check punctuation in public-facing text in pull requests. Punctuation is a deep and complex subject, and our typewriter layouts—the US layouts, at least—still reflect the legacy of an earlier age. Here I want to discuss common and often misused punctuation marks: quotation marks, apostrophes, and ellipsis.

The underappreciated reason Google is useless

A mostly empty, modern auditorium with musical instruments set up on the stage. The picture has been taken from the balcony. Small box seats are visible to either side. A screen on stage promotes details of the NPR show Mountain Stage

You don’t need me to tell you that search engines are struggling to be relevant. Often the blame falls on search engine optimization and Google’s business practices. Both contribute, no doubt. But Google — and the rest of us, actually — depended heavily on the volunteer attitude of the young web and its dedication to open access.

Syntax coloring in template literals

A picture of a code sample showing CSS being assigned to a string, but without any visible syntax coloring.

I’ve been digging into web components recently. For this site, a big advantage to the components is encapsulating the code samples in my articles. But since you tend to write CSS and HTML inside a Javascript file you lose the syntax colors. I like syntax colors. I spent enough years trying to do bracket-matching without them.

Instant Pot steel-cut oatmeal

Oatmeal with blueberries and slivered almonds in a blue bowl

Although the original craze was some years ago, we make regular use of our Instant Pot. This time of the year I use it a lot to make oatmeal. Making oatmeal in the pot is pretty straightforward:

Prefers reduced motion

A closeup of Medusa’s sneering face from the 1981 movie “Clash of the Titans”

Some people say Medusa turned people to stone because she was just that ugly. Others portray her as an evil, magical being. Still more claim Medusa was just an unlucky woman cursed by the victim-blaming God Minerva. I have my own theory, which is that Medusa just wanted people to settle down.