Right-o, Bill. I had neglected to notice the full context of the
construct, and issued my first response too hastily. My bad. 

However, in the case of a conditional construct, I stand by my statement
and conviction that most readers could not care less whether we say, "If
such-and-such is true, then do this," or "If such-and-such is true, do


-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Swallow [mailto:techcommd...@gmail.com] 
Sent: Thursday, June 29, 2006 2:09 PM
To: Beck, Charles
Cc: Tammy.VanBoening at jeppesen.com; framers at frameusers.com
Subject: Re: Syntax for if/then statement

> Bad news: At least one major style guide and my own experience are on 
> your new editor's side on this one. In fact, the _Microsoft Manual of 
> Style for Technical Publications, Third Edition_ takes it even
> That style guide states that you should avoid the "if...then"
> construction altogether and not use the word "then" at all in such 
> situations. That is, you should simply say something like "If 
> such-and-such is true, do this."

Right, but the recommended construct is "if A, do B" not "if A, and do

> Somewhat ironically, the only people who care passionately enough 
> about such matters to discuss, debate, and defend them vehemently and 
> endlessly are the documentation folks, typically. Our readers could 
> probably not care less.

Actually, in the case of a "if/and then" construction, I'll bet the
readers would care and be just a tad bit confused.

Bill Swallow
HATT List Owner
WWP-Users List Owner
Senior Member STC, TechValley Chapter

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