With the advent of word processors, we saw a great debate take shape: does one enter a single space or a double space after a period? The double space was a holdover from the days of the typewriter, and even now, it still has its adherents. If you’re one of them, you might want to prepare yourself for a certain update that’s on the way to Microsoft Word.
Microsoft has apparently decided to throw in with those who prefer a single space, as test builds of Word now treat a double space after a period as an error. When you allow the word processor to correct the error, it’ll revert it to – you guessed it – a single space.
The Verge says that while this feature is only in testing for now, it won’t be long before it rolls out to the entire Word-using audience on desktop. The good news, however, is that you won’t be stuck forever looking at those error lines underneath your double spaces if you don’t want to. In a statement to The Verge, Microsoft’s partner director of program management Kirk Gregersen said that the double spacers of the world will be able to ignore the error flag and continue overusing their space bar, if they so choose.
“As the crux of the great spacing debate, we know this is a stylistic choice that may not be the preference for all writers, which is why we continue to test with users and enable these suggestions to be easily accepted, ignored, or flat out dismissed in Editor,” Gregersen said.
So, there you have it – Microsoft isn’t quite pushing out the double spacers yet, but this still feels like a big win for the single spacers. Expect to see this feature land in Microsoft Word in the months ahead.