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[bug #61467] [PATCH] doc/pic.ms: Use the name rather than the symbol for

From: G. Branden Robinson
Subject: [bug #61467] [PATCH] doc/pic.ms: Use the name rather than the symbol for a unit
Date: Sat, 20 Nov 2021 06:11:13 -0500 (EST)
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/78.0

Update of bug #61467 (project groff):

                Severity:              3 - Normal => 2 - Minor              
                  Status:                    None => Need Info              


Follow-up Comment #2:

[comment #0 original submission:]
> From a0837ba65287a48272acf6b92114cb16fe30ef7a Mon Sep 17 00:00:00 2001
> From: Bjarni Ingi Gislason <bjarniig@rhi.hi.is>
> Date: Thu, 11 Nov 2021 21:46:23 +0000
> Subject: [PATCH] doc/pic.ms: Use the name rather than the symbol for a unit
>   The symbol '"' is a specific English one.

Do you have some support for this assertion?

I checked Diderot/d'Alembert's _Encyclop├ędie_ and Cajori's landmark work on
mathematical notations and could not decide the issue.

It's plausible to me that the use of single and double prime symbols was
adapted from the division of the circle into degrees, minutes, and seconds. 
But this is speculation on my part.
>   I do not see it for example in conversion tables.

How suggestive this depends on which ones you checked.  The metrication of
much European literature can cloud the issue; to see how foot and inch were
abbreviated or symbolized in non-English traditions you may have to consult
pre-Napoleonic sources (hence why I turned to _Encyclop├ędie_).

The French had "pied et pouce", for example, and Spanish consumers of
televisions and monitors seem to know what "pulgadas" are despite their
country having been fully metric for many decades.

>   Names of units are better in text than symbols.


>  .sp 2p
>  .TH
> -box@0.75" wide by 0.5" high
> -circle@0.5" diameter
> -ellipse@0.75" wide by 0.5" high
> -arc@0.5" radius
> -line@0.5" long
> -arrow@0.5" long
> +box@0.75 inches wide by 0.5 inches high
> +circle@0.5 inches diameter
> +ellipse@0.75 inches wide by 0.5 inches high
> +arc@0.5 inches radius
> +line@0.5 inches long
> +arrow@0.5 inches long

I am sure that you've found at least one problem; the use of the neutral
double quote here is bad typography.  The special character \[sd] should be
used instead, which the output device or one of the fonts thereof can degrade
to '"' if necessary.


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