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14.3.2 Not Ending a Sentence

Depending on whether a period or exclamation point or question mark is inside or at the end of a sentence, slightly less or more space is inserted after a period in a typeset manual. Since it is not always possible to determine automatically when a period ends a sentence, special commands are needed in some circumstances. Usually, Texinfo can guess how to handle periods, so you do not need to use the special commands; you just enter a period as you would if you were using a typewriter: put two spaces after the period, question mark, or exclamation mark that ends a sentence.

Use the @: command after a period, question mark, exclamation mark, or colon that should not be followed by extra space. For example, use @: after periods that end (lowercase) abbreviations which are not at the ends of sentences.

Also, when a parenthetical remark in the middle of a sentence (like this one!) ends with a period, exclamation point, or question mark, @: should be used after the right parenthesis. Similarly for right brackets and right quotes (both single and double).

For example,

foo vs.@: bar (or?)@: baz
foo vs. bar (or?) baz

produces

foo vs. bar (or?) baz
foo vs. bar (or?) baz

@: has no effect on the HTML or Docbook output.

Do not put braces after @: (or any non-alphabetic command).

A few Texinfo commands force normal interword spacing, so that you don’t have to insert @: where you otherwise would. These are the code-like highlighting commands, @var, @abbr, and @acronym (see section Highlighting Commands are Useful). For example, in ‘@code{foo. bar}’ the period is not considered the end of a sentence, and no extra space is inserted.


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