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I've come across varied examples of menu items using title cases for capitalizing words and others use sentence cases for menu items

For example, macOS mainly uses title cases for menu entries across applications. But Google in their web apps uses sentence cases.

Is there research showcasing why one or the other is preferred? The two mainly refer to main menus and context menus.

Thanks

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  • @zquierdo This helps, especially the Gnome guidelines. I had been looking for their approach for cases to compare Apple and Microsoft. Apr 8, 2022 at 19:45
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    @greenforest this lends to some insight. I keep finding that most decisions on this are to pick one and stick with it. Or, follow what is defined in the style guide. Thanks! Apr 19, 2022 at 15:31

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Not aware of research, but the arguments in favour of sentence case are:

  • A title is already represented as a title because it's a larger size, or different font, compared to regular copy. Why make some words capitals?
  • There are rules about which words are capitalised: 'the' and 'a' tend not to be, for instance. Being consistent about this in a system managed by lots of people gets harder.
  • Compare these 2 headlines: "Software Engineers Admit To Coke Habit" and "Software engineers admit to Coke habit". The second makes it clear we're referring to a popular soft drink. The first could also be a naughty drug.
  • Visually, it's easier to see where the sentence begins

Stylistically title case can be OK, but for the reasons above, the UX is better with sentence case.

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  • If this is the case, then why does Apple, Microsoft, and Adobe use title case in their menus? The only example I can find that uses sentence cases in their menus is Google with their web browser apps. Thanks for the insight! Apr 8, 2022 at 19:41
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    I've provided a rationale for why I prefer sentence case. Maybe Apple, Microsoft or Adobe could provide a rationale for why they use title case sometimes? I mean, apple.com/ipad doesn't use title case. And microsoft.com/en-gb uses it inconsistently. And adobe.com uses sentence case with periods, which is a bit silly.
    – Peter
    Apr 9, 2022 at 20:05
  • I should clarify I’m speaking of their web application menus not their websites. Like Office 365 apps, Google Docs, Sheets etc. Adobe Express. Menus like File Edit View Apr 11, 2022 at 2:33

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