Confusing automated translators.

Tim Roberts timr at
Thu Jul 17 05:02:29 CEST 2003

Jack Diederich <jack at> wrote:
>My favorite example is comifying a list.
>"1, 2, and 3" vs "1, 2 and 3" (journalist seem to prefer the later)
>"I dedicate this book to my parents, Jane, and God."
>"I dedicate this book to my parents, Jane and God."

This is actually something that is changing over time.  It used to be that
"no final comma" was a hard and fast rule, but many of the more recent
style guides now suggest the comma.

My 7th grader's English textbook advocates the final comma, and it led me
to get her into trouble in one assignment.
- Tim Roberts, timr at
  Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.

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