[Xr] Naming Xr (and linguistic nitpicking)

Carl Worth cworth at east.isi.edu
Sat Jul 12 09:46:13 PDT 2003

On Jul 12, Eric Christopherson wrote:
 > On Sat, Jul 12, 2003 at 09:28:31AM -0700, Keith Packard wrote:

 > Warning: linguistic nitpicking ahead!

Fine by me.

 > While I really like the name Cairo, there are a few troublesome issues. One,
 > the Greek rho really looks like a Latin letter P, not R. That would make it
 > Xp ;)

Yes. In order to get to R from rho one has to consider the Greek
pronunciation or rho with the pronunciation of R in several Romance
languages. Alas, X from chi relies on the shape of the glyph, (where
pronunciation would more likely yield K or CH).

Another possibility for transliterating XR to Greek letters would be
ksi rho, but that doesn't have good possibilities for a name that
would sound natural to English speakers.

 > > and the italian word 'chiaros' means 'light, clear',
 > I think that's chiaro, no s.

Ah, but as long as we're nitpicking we can recall that Italian
adjectives also appear in plural form, so Keith's statement is
technically correct; there is an Italian word chiaros. ;-)

 > Also, it's pronounced kyah-ro, not ky-ro, but that's still fairly
 > similar.

True. I thought of chiaro after looking at the names of chi and rho
spelled out. I had been trying to thing of words suggesting light or
terms used in art, and I think chiaro pulls these concepts together
nicely. On the other hand, I think Cairo makes a much better sounding
name than Chiaro.


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