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22 August 2006

Comments

Bob Lawless

"Data"--a singular noun? Never! Are we to bow to every passing fad? Just because times have changed is no reason we should as well. After we get done rewriting the English language, we might as well rename the planets in the heavens . . . . oh, never mind.

William Ford

I thought about this issue the other day when writing a post, but I went with the plural -- and then changed the sentence -- to minimize the awkwardness. It would be easier just to go with what sounds most natural to the ear, which, I think, is generally the singular form. So here is another link one can attach to the word "data" when using it as a singular noun.

http://www.askoxford.com/asktheexperts/faq/aboutgrammar/data

William Henderson

Chris, When I use data in the plural for the first time, I am going to cite this (damn) post. I am glad to know the proper use. Thanks, bh.

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