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#lang pollen
(define-meta title "carriage returns")
hanging-topic[(topic-from-metas metas)]{Only when you want a new paragraph}
On manual typewriters, the em{carriage} was the part on top that held the paper and scooted leftward as you typed. At the end of each line, youd push a lever to move the carriage to the beginning of the next line. On electric typewriters, this lever became the em{carriage return key}, which youd press at the end of each line.
The terminology has stayed with us, but on a word processor, you only use a carriage return to start a new paragraph.
As with the xref{word space}, use only one carriage return at a time. Its common to see multiple carriage returns used to add vertical space between paragraphs. Bad idea. If you want vertical space after a paragraph, use xref{space between paragraphs}.
But its so much easier to type two carriage returns. I know. But in long, structured documents, extra carriage returns create unpredictable consequences as the document is edited. Whatever time you save with the shortcut will cost you later.