Hooray for One of My Favorite Magazines

by Arnold Burian

I’m referring to Scientific American. My wife calls it my porn because I read it cover to cover, and have since high school. Even though they don’t use the oxford comma, harrumpf.

One subtlety of punctuation is how to use the three horizontal punctuation marks, the hyphen, the N-dash, and the M-dash. These folks get them right.

  • Hyphen—use it to connect compounds
  • N-dash—indicates a range
  • M-dash—indicates a break

From an article in the July 2020 issue (pages 56f).

In 1990 only three-day forecasts were 80 percent accurate or better. Today the three-, five- and seven-day outlooks are at that level.

Many more factors must be considered in a 3–4 week forecast.

And they consider winds in the stratosphere, which extends from roughly 10 to 48 kilometers above the earth’s surface—higher than where airplanes fly.

Can’t beat a good example, even if they left out the oxford comma (you noticed it, didn’t you?)

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