Re: Long item-list fix

From: Anthony Spataro (
Date: 06/23/95

 On Fri, 23 Jun 1995, Daniel [Trice] Koepke wrote:

>    have 'enpluralize', or whatever interpret the '*' by taking the first 
> parameter passed to it (the number), and replacing it with a grouping 
> name..  eg., enpluralize(30, "A * @longsword lies here."); would cause 
> the asterisk to be replaced with something like, 'a massive pile of', as 
> for the '@' in front of longsword, have it check 'number_passed' > 1 and 
> either append an "s" or leave it alone.

Good idea.  I'll incorporate it.  There can be codes for explicit number, 
explicit heap 'o whatever, and auto-decision.  Auto-decision would take 
into account the number of items as well as their mass/bulk; that way, 
gold coins would become a pile at maybe 20 (albeit a small pile), while 
Honda Accords wouldn't become a pile until they numbered in the hundreds.  

> Also, keep the old format you first suggested for more flexibility, in case 
> you WANT something to be counted out and shown exactly how many of them 
> there are.

As far as spelling out numbers goes, I think it's best to follow the 
journalistic convention of writing the word for numbers 0 <= n <= 9.  
When you've got a choice between

There are 2987236974 exploding penguins here


There are two billion nine hundred eighty seven million two hundred 
thirty six thousand nine hundred seventy four exploding penguins here

it's clear which conveys the information better.

 _/\_   GU -d H s : g? p5 au- a17 w v- C UL P L 3- E---- N K- W--- M-- V-- po
/ L  \  Y t 5 j-- R G---- tv-- b D B--- e u*(**) h! f !r !n !y+   
\_ C_/  =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

What this country needs is a good five cent microcomputer.

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