Tips on Writing

This is really great advice on writing articles. It comes from the IEEE Templates for Transactions (I removed some of the recommendations to make it shorter), and you should heed this advice!

  • The word “data” is plural, not singular.
  • Use the word “micrometer” instead of “micron.”
  • A graph within a graph is an “inset,” not an “insert.”
  • The word “alternatively” is preferred to the word “alternately” (unless you really mean something that alternates).
  • Use the word “whereas” instead of “while” (unless you are referring to simultaneous events).
  • Do not use the word “essentially” to mean “approximately” or “effectively.”
  • Do not use the word “issue” as a euphemism for “problem.”
  • Be aware of the different meanings of the homophones “affect” (usually a verb) and “effect” (usually a noun), “complement” and “compliment,” “discreet” and “discrete,” “principal” (e.g., “principal investigator”) and “principle” (e.g., “principle of measurement”).
  • Do not confuse “imply” and “infer.”
  •  Prefixes such as “non,” “sub,” “micro,” “multi,” and “ultra” are not independent words; they should be joined to the words they modify, usually without a hyphen.
  • There is no period after the “et” in the Latin abbreviation “et al.” (it is also italicized).
  • The abbreviation “i.e.,” means “that is,” and the abbreviation “e.g.,” means “for example” (these abbreviations are not italicized).