As far as style goes, which is the most appropriate for stackoverflow?

  1. Don't forget to change the margins.
  2. Don't forget to change the margins.
  3. Don't forget to change the margins.

I prefer number 2. For a property that is a keyword as well as a normal English word—such as margin, or border—it is more ambiguous. I don't think many people would argue against "Don't forget to change the -o-text-shadows"

In addition, what is the best way to treat filenames and extensions?

  1. .css
  2. .css

I ask because I use ` judiciously, but I have had them edited out of my answers.

Does it harm the readability of a post, or is it appropriate to treat any snippet of code as code—even if it is one word?


I prefer your number 1. If you really want to emphasize that you're talking about the specific attributes, or if there might be some ambiguity, do something like:

Don't forget to change the margin attributes.

This makes it clear what you're talking about while at the same time not giving the impression of sprinkling random code tags on English words (which is annoying).

Putting extensions in inline code blocks is fine.

  • After having viewed a number of suggested edits that follow the #2 syndrome, I have to agree. That, and it's a slippery slope to simply say "Don't forget to change the margins.", and not to start turning the sentence into a backtick polluted mess. – Nightfirecat Oct 30 '12 at 8:42

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