Collinear v.s. colinear


(Not that important but out of curiosity)

With coplanar (faces) there seems to be no misunderstnding about spelling the word.
What often (and for a long time now) has surprised me is how col(l)linear (edges) is spelled here on the forum. Colinear is by far more favorit and can’t even remember seeing double l used.
I use collinear and can’t find colinear on internet as being correct.

Who helps me out to stop being stubborn or …



It’s English so all rules are meant to be broken, either spelling is acceptable. You’ll find the variations in spelling are often geographic or socioeconomic. For Americans it is Color, for British it is Colour, US Favorite, GB Favourite and so on and so forth with many words and phrases. Then you can have different spellings depending on class structure/education standards, much like Common German and High German.

Personally I favour colinear, as it is co and linear not col and linear, but then English tends to throw in extra letters just because they can.


Although I tend to use ‘colinear’ [as it seems the most logical formation, and it is one less key-press] AND it is now widely regarded as a direct synonym of ‘collinear’, there is a subtle difference in their ‘original’ meanings…

Having corresponding parts arranged in the same linear order.
e.g. A gene and the protein it determines could be said to be ‘colinear’.
First used 1927.

Lying on, or passing through, the same straight line.
e.g. ‘Collinear’ points.
Or having axes lying end to end in a straight line.
e.g. ‘Collinear’ elements in an antenna-array.
First used 1863.


As any crossword puzzle fan will tell you, English is rife with variant spellings of words. In many cases a variant starts out as an error and eventually becomes accepted due to popular usage.


I searched my system for colinear and found a number of plugin icon images labeled 'colinear’
Searching my system for collinear returned roughly the same number of results.

Microsoft® Word™ auto-corrects colinear to be collinear.
And the folks at Merriam-Webster spell it collinear.

I think it’s like @Box says, a lot depends upon whose English you prefer.


I get tyred of fretting over such specialisations.


I’m not picking on anybody, it’s just that I wood/woot like it to be one spelling for one and the same word.

Not really. And I can understand that there are quite a few ways of English spelling, more than there are versions in Dutch, as @Box wrote. Afterall we represent such a small spot on the globe.


I’m not a linguist so I can’t comment on the evolution of spelling in other languages. But in English the pronunciation of words has varied both regionally and historically. For a long time spelling wasn’t standardized at all, with many writers choosing their own local preferences. Non-standard (or lacking) education no doubt also played a role. The difference between things such as British “colour” and American “color” and “ise” vs “ize” arose when Webster tried to clean up spelling for his dictionary, eliminating letters that he thought were superfluous or that no longer reflected the way the word was most commonly pronounced in America. Bottom line: it’s a mess!


I’m quite sure SketchUp is in en-US so there’s no need to bring in en-GB.


[quote=“eneroth3, post:9, topic:32540, full:true”]
I’m quite sure SketchUp is in en-US so there’s no need to bring in en-GB.
[/quote] That is unless you happen to be from GB ?
Each ENglish speaking country has it’s own EN version and oddities, and, yes, the US one prevails in SketchUp… but…
There is yet another ‘International English’ used by airline pilots, which might be more apt !
US = airplane
GB = aeroplane
INT = aircraft
etc etc
It often uses either US or GB conventions, so there is no single logical ‘ENglish’ at all !


I am American living in British soil, using SketchUp day to day.

Eraser tool is another one that raises British eyebrows as it would have to be called the Rubber tool. :smiley:


It makes me happy that native English speakers have those problems too.
(But you should really say mouses instead of mice :wink: )


ah, it still hurts a little bit, doesn’t it?

How is German spelling? I guess more or less as strict as Dutch spelling rules.

From what I remember learning Spanish, they also seem to have quite strickt rules.
The thing that makes it difficult are the verbs (as in French), for me at least.
And in German it’s:
der / des / dem / den or
die / der / den / die or
das / des / dem / das,
for the English word “the” in normal life.


This makes even more sense now with Brexit.

The European Commission has announced an agreement whereby English will be the official language of the EU, rather than German, which was the other contender. Her Majesty’s Government conceded that English spelling had room for improvement and has therefore accepted a five-year phasing in of “Euro-English”.

In the first year, “s” will replace the soft “c”. Sertainly, this will make sivil servants jump for joy. The hard “c” will be dropped in favour of the “k”, Which should klear up some konfusion and allow one key less on keyboards.

There will be growing publik enthusiasm in the sekond year, when the troublesome “ph” will be replaced with “f”, making words like “fotograf” 20% shorter.

In the third year, publik akseptanse of the new spelling kan be expekted to reach the stage where more komplikated changes are possible. Governments will enkourage the removal of double letters which have always ben a deterent to akurate speling. Also, al wil agre that the horible mes of the silent “e” is disgrasful.

By the fourth yer, peopl wil be reseptiv to steps such as replasing “th” with “z” and “w” with “v”.

During ze fifz yer, ze unesesary “o” kan be dropd from vords kontaining “ou” and similar changes vud of kors be aplid to ozer kombinations of leters. After zis fifz yer, ve vil hav a reli sensibl riten styl. Zer vil be no mor trubls or difikultis and everivun vil find it ezi to understand ech ozer. ZE DREM VIL FINALI COM TRU!

Herr Schmidt


Som tjanges ar improovments, som ar definitifly not.
But wat ar we doing with Englishj as the officilal languitshj in Europe without Britain inkluded?

( I do, but on the other hand at the same time don’t understand the Brexit as the outcome of the referendum. We need a far better “team” in Brussel)



Don’t forget that EN-GB is also an official language of Ireland [ indeed Ireland are the only EU member not to insist on one of their official languages being used in translations - Gaelic - since almost everyone speaks English there anyway ]

George Bernard Shaw was an ardent advocate of rationalizing English spelling... e.g. the word fish could be spelled "ghoti" - with the gh = /f/ as in enough. o = /i/ as in women. ti= /sh/ as in nation.
However, the confusion with English spelling is often underlain by interesting histories... For example the words starting with "kn" were actually pronounced with the "k" and "n" sounds up until Shakespeare's time - when the "k" became silent. French for pen-KNife = canif - pronounced K'neef The GB word "plough" [now "plow" in USA] was originally pronounced much as it's still spelled /pl'och/ Around Shakespeare's time the pronouns thy, thine, thee's and thou's became the simpler "your" and "you" - avoiding singular/plural/gender/formality issues altogether. Word order is more important in English because we eschewed gender and grammatical word-endings, like noun-adjective agreements etc. We also avoid to a great extent gender - although gender is useful when talking about people, who needs masculine and feminine differences for objects, let alone neuter forms like German and Greek - with various agreeing articles depending on the grammatical use in the sentence.


I recall reading that “neighbor” is spelled (spelt) that way because at one time it was pronounced like negbore (with a gutteral ‘g’).



Neighbours is without doubt the most boring TV ever produced.


The English should perhaps start to adopt the Finnish syste of spelling: