Questions relating to the use of numbers or numerals in speaking or writing English.

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3answers
205 views

Need help simplyfying sentences containing economic information

I am not very knowledgeable about economics and am trying to reword these two sentences: In 1964 the CDC 6600 cost around $7 million USD, though some sources site prices of up to $10 million. ...
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1answer
93 views

Is it proper to say “I earned -1 points today” when I lost 1 point?

Suppose I play a game where I can lose points as well as gain them. Usually I'll say: I earned 10 points today, hooray! But what if I lost points and still want to use "optimistic" verb? I ...
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3answers
919 views

What is the formal way of expressing 1990s?

How do you express the last decade of 20th century in formal written English? "1990s"? If the century is known from the context, can you simply say "the nineties"? As in: "The involvement of US in ...
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1answer
101 views

What is the correct way to express yearly quarters? Is using roman numerals correct?

While looking over a company's annual report, I realized that every business quarter was denoted using roman numerals. E.g. QI,2014 QII, 2014 etc. I am sure I am being petty and pedantic, ...
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3answers
194 views

Words or digits? What is good style for numbers in mathematical writing?

What is considered good style for writing small numbers as words or digits in mathematical texts? I have three concrete examples, are there any differences between those? "M is a matroid of rank ...
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2answers
258 views

How to punctuate a range of hyphenated numbers? [duplicate]

What is the best way to punctuate a range of hyphenated numbers, e.g., sections 12-3 through 12-7? EDIT: Just to reply to those who marked this as a duplicate, I really fail to see how the post that ...
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1answer
170 views

A lot of numbers in a paragraph, how should I phrase them [closed]

The formal grammar demands that numbers be written out as words at the beginning of a sentence. I have a paragraph like the one below and I am not sure how best to re-phrase it so as to conform to the ...
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3answers
84 views

Reading discount rates

How I should read discount rates like the following: a $3.50 discount I'm not sure if I should say "a three-fifty dollar discount," "a three dollar and fifty cent discount," or ...
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1answer
39 views

Is a number range always plural?

If I were to say "2-3 weeks" it seems clear that weeks should be plural. Are there any cases where a number range would not be plural (e.g. 0-1 week or 0-1 weeks)? Would it matter if the usage was ...
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1answer
49 views

How many can follow up with “you”?

Imagine you are talking to a coterie: Who will vote for Obama? (2 hands raise) I want to ask you two... How many can follow up with "you" if there are more people to imply? Who will vote ...
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3answers
97 views

Where do these numbers come from, and do we still use them? [duplicate]

I began to read the stories of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes, and several times already, I came across numbers the form of which surprise me... First, in A Study in Scarlet, Chapter IV: ...
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2answers
576 views

English words for specific positive integers (e.g. dozen, score, gross, myriad) [closed]

Dozen = 12 Score = 20 Gross = 144 Myriad = 10,000 Googol = 10¹⁰⁰ Googolplex = 10Googol Indian English: Lakh = 100,000 and Crore = 10,000,000. Ignoring all the numbers already listed on ...
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3answers
78 views

Late/early for numbers other than age/year

When referring to age or to periods in time, it is quite common to use expressions such as He is in his late twenties or The best music was produced in the early eighties I have recently ...
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2answers
561 views

Usage of hyphens with numeric measurements

What is correct: two 1-Gb links; two 1 Gb links; or two 1Gb links? I suspect the first, however I do not know the name of this situation, which makes it difficult to for me to find via Google. I ...
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0answers
32 views

How do we say hexadecimal numbers? [duplicate]

When speaking series of decimal numbers, we say "one... nine, ten"; when speaking hexadecimals do we say "one... e, f, ten"? Do we say "nineteen, ateen, bteen... fteen, twenty" and so forth, or do we ...
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0answers
85 views

Is there a fraction prefix for “(one-)third”?

I am a mathematician, working with things called 1⁄k-regular polytopes, dubbed thus by Conway. For the case of k = 2, as in ½-regular, it is naturally pronounced and written half-regular. However, I ...
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1answer
59 views

Should street numbers be written as cardinal or ordinal numbers [closed]

When writing a numerical street, do you use a cardinal number (220 Street) or ordinal number (220th Street)
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0answers
18 views

Ordinal numbers as adverbs [duplicate]

I was once told not to end "firstly [point 1], secondly [point2], thirdly [point 3]" in -ly and to leave them as first, second, third etc. Is this always true or only in certain situations? Is it ever ...
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3answers
536 views

What size of number should be written in digits as opposed to spelt out? [duplicate]

I was taught that small numbers should be written with letters and not numerals. For example "5" would be "five". I've heard conflicting rules and am wondering what the largest number that should be ...
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0answers
3k views

“Two and two makes four” vs. “two and two make four” [duplicate]

Two and two makes four. Two and two make four. Which is grammatical? Please provide your reasoning.
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0answers
79 views

What is the question for which the answer is “This is my third coffee today”? [duplicate]

Duplicate of: How should I phrase a question that must be answered with an ordinal number (e.g., the third prime)? Framing a question to which the answer is an ordinal number How manyth son ...
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2answers
665 views

“sufferings” is plural though it is uncountable,but how?

We know that there is no plural form of the "uncountable noun," but, for example, we write: His sufferings force us to retain pity for him. Is it possible to make an uncountable noun plural? If ...
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4answers
139 views

How to say fractions like “7/8” or “546/823”

I have come across the following three spoken variants for the fraction ⅞: Seven by eight Seven over eight Seven into eight I am also aware of seven-eighths but I don't want to use that as it ...
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3answers
1k views

When do the “-uple”s end? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to form single, double, triple… and uni-, bi-, tri-… words? There's single, double, triple, quadruple... — what's next? Is there an end to the ...
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1answer
309 views

how do I write “about four or five hundred US Dollars”

I proofread/edit transcribed witness evidence, and often witnesses will say something like "around four or five thousand dollars". If the evidence is all about figures, I would sometimes write this ...
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3answers
1k views

many hours is? or are?

Time, distance, weight are treated as singular, like "3 hours is too long." Then, in this instance, "How many hours of sleep is/are needed to keep fit?" Is "is" correct?
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4answers
38k views

How to say the total amount?

I'm not sure if the saying of the total amount USD 23,428.32 is correct below (esp. the 'cent' part after the dot): Say U.S. dollars twenty-three thousand four hundred and twenty-eight and ...
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2answers
51 views

“being wined and dined” — singular?

I want to say, "He loves being wined and dined, and he's not above demanding it." I don't know whether being can be treated as the referent of it, or I must take the whole verb phrase as a plural. I ...
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2answers
121 views

Combining numbers and text

In the following sentence I am using a combination of numbers and words in a sentence: The greatest loss in accuracy for the method is between a rate of one and two hours where, on average, the ...
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3answers
116 views

Formatting numbers in a book about mathematics

Would anyone be kind enough to point me to a reliable source (preferably on line) where I can find definitive answers to how to format numbers consistently within a book about maths aimed at popular ...
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2answers
132 views

Why “proximate” refers to centesimal? [closed]

I mean, when I read "proximate" I think about "proximity".. why does it refers exactly to the 3rd digit in a number?
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1answer
132 views

can I say 'a 300-thousand city'

I am looking for a noun meaning 'having 300 thousand inhabitants' so that I could say for example 'a 300-thousand city' instead of 'a city in which 300 thousand people live' or 'a city inhabited by ...
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3answers
67 views

How to refer to a previous number by “that much”?

Sentence: Using cross-validation, it was shown that modeling at a penalty value of 1.25 did achieve the highest performance. This indicates that a penalty value that much could mitigate the ...
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2answers
60 views

Number usage in a series [closed]

Is it right to say that the percentage decreases by 10% each time, like in this example: Around 30% of politicians throughout the world are women. A significant 30% is represented in Scandinavian ...
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3answers
104 views

Meaning of “I have three books and CDs”

I have three books and CDs. Does this mean I have three books and three CDs? Or are there three items in total? Are both possible? I am asking for a native speaker's opinion.
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3answers
1k views

Hyphenating spelled-out fractions with large numerators and/or denominators

I find myself in the awkward position of needing to systematically spell out fractions where the numerator, the denominator, or both have three or more digits, and I'm not sure about the hyphenation. ...
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3answers
82 views

proper grammar of multiple numbers ordered sequentially specifying different things

I have a sentence submitted to me from someone else that says One case (8 - one lb. boxes) of... What is the proper grammar to say eight one pound boxes? I'm not sure what the best format is for ...
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1answer
37 views

Last (count) entries

I am currently documenting a web interface. What would you recommend as a more friendly way of saying: This will display the last n entries. Where n is the number they have entered. I've been ...
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1answer
107 views

Is it correct to say “Do not duplicate the information, add only new one”?

Information is an uncountable noun. Therefore, is it correct to refer to it with a number one as in: do not duplicate the information, add only new one?
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1answer
4k views

Numeric abbreviations in business quotes [closed]

When writing a quote for an order for products, would you write 25K or 25M to refer to 25,000 parts or pounds or units?
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2answers
137 views

Pronunciation of OS X versions [closed]

I don't feel like this belongs on SU, so I put it here. I know that "OS X" is pronounced "oh-ess ten," but how should the common construction "OS X 10.9" be pronounced? The primary possibility I can ...
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1answer
35 views

Should even a large number be spelled out when used as a pronoun?

I have learned somewhere (or maybe decided ) that any number used as a pronoun -- that is, X standing alone to represent the already stated group of X nouns -- should be spelled out, no matter how big ...
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1answer
31 views

When is it acceptable to combine numbers and words? [closed]

Is it okay to write? (a) There used to be 10 million but numbers have dropped to between 50 and 100 thousand. or should it be? (b) There used to be 10 million but numbers have dropped to between 50 ...
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1answer
54 views

When to write number and word combinations? [closed]

I have two puzzles here. Whether to use 'and' or 'to' AND should it be 100,00 or 100 thousand. (a) There used to be 10 million but it is estimated that numbers have dropped to between 50 to 100 ...
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1answer
70 views

Is there a word for 'within ten units of'?

Is there a word that can used like decade, but when talking about units not years? For example, everyone knows that: 2006 is within a decade of 1998 1989 is in the same decade as 1984 However, ...
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2answers
318 views

When are Roman Numeral suffixes appropriate for number abbreviations?

This question was asked and closed last year as general reference. However, it did not attract the caliber of answer I expected it to. I suggested the below content as an edit, but it was rejected for ...
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1answer
344 views

Should one suspend a hyphen when using “two- to three-digit” phrase used as an adjective? [closed]

Example Sally alerted her accountant to four to five digit revenue discrepancies in the budget. Should it be: ...to four to five digit revenue discrepancies or with a suspended hyphen: ...
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1answer
111 views

May numero sign (No.) be used to indicate amount?

I found that numero sign (No.) may be used as abbreviation of word "number" in meaning "ordinal number". May it be used as abbreviation of word "number" in meaning "amount"?
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1answer
1k views

Differences between Amount, Count, Number and Quantity [duplicate]

My programming peers suggest to use the term count with discrete things: count of words, count of sentences and so on. Then again my instructor suggest me to use the term "number" for the discrete ...
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3answers
1k views

Writing numbers that are less than two digits in length [duplicate]

I was told that numbers under two digits should be written out alphabetically (e.g. one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine), and that anything two digits or over should be written out ...