[gmx-developers] neighbo[u]r

David van der Spoel spoel at xray.bmc.uu.se
Thu Jul 20 10:39:44 CEST 2006

Berk Hess wrote:
> Mark Abraham wrote:
>> Berk Hess wrote:
>>> Mark Abraham wrote:
>>>> Hi,
>>>> Can we make an effort to standardize the spelling of neighbo[u]r for 
>>>> 4.0...? I don't care what it is, but it seems silly to have 
>>>> search_neighbours and init_neighbor_list called within 20 lines of 
>>>> each other. Obviously it's much better to be able to grep for one 
>>>> spelling of the word, not either.
>>> I have a slight preference for the american spelling.
>>> But you can use:
>>> grep "neighbo[u]*r" ...
>>> :)
>> Of course, but the value is that someone who uses the non-agreed 
>> spelling will get zero hits, and someone using the agreed spelling 
>> will get all the hits, and nobody needs to be alert to the possibility 
>> of an alternative spelling... How many non-native English speakers 
>> would be aware of this one? (I won't dare ask how many American 
>> English speakers would be aware of this one... :-P)
> I fully agree, I was just joking.
> When you work in Europe (like I do) you probably publish in European and 
> American journals,
> which means that you would (or should) be aware of most of these pitfalls.
> Still we somehow managed to mess up the code.
> First I thought I was the prime suspect, as I think the old code used 
> British spelling,
> whereas I prefer American. But I found others added inconsistent routine 
> names as well.
> I think we should agree on complete British or American spelling for the 
> code
> as well as the manual.

Fine, but apart from this easy example it seems not worth the effort to 
go through all the code and clean it up. Besides it is always fun to see 
those old comments and error messages that suddenly pop up after many 

> I just checked the manual and it only contains "neighbor", no "neighbour".
> Somebody already decided to clean up that mess in 1999.

In fact, we had a volunteer wo went through the manual and reported back 
pages full of corrections. Unfortunately since we're mainly non-native 
speakers, we have probably re-introduced a couple of errors too...

David van der Spoel, PhD, Assoc. Prof., Molecular Biophysics group,
Dept. of Cell and Molecular Biology, Uppsala University.
Husargatan 3, Box 596,  	75124 Uppsala, Sweden
phone:	46 18 471 4205		fax: 46 18 511 755
spoel at xray.bmc.uu.se	spoel at gromacs.org   http://folding.bmc.uu.se

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