Word of the day – dylunio gwe

dylunio gwe = web design
dylunio = to design; gwe = web, gauze, texture

Heddiw, o’r diwedd, dw i’n wedi dod o hyd i’r gair Cymraeg am web design, a thermau defnyddiol eraill fel systemau rheoli cynnwys, datblygu gwefanau a mewnrwydi. Rŵan, os oes angen arna i, dw i’n gallu siarad am y pethau hyn.

Today, I finally found the Welsh word for web design, and a number of other useful words such as content management system, website development and intranet. So I can now talk about these things in Welsh if the need every arises.

I find it interesting to see how different languages deal with terminology for new inventions and technology. Some just borrow the words from the original language (often English), some translate the terms, and others coin new words from their existing word stock. For example, computer is 计算机 (jìsuànjī) – “calculating machine” in China and 電腦 (diànnào) – “electric brain” in Taiwan, while in Japan it’s コンピューター (konpyūtā). The Welsh word for computer is cyfrifiadur – “thing that counts/calculates”.

I read somewhere that Iceland they hold a national competition to come up with words for new inventions. Does anybody know if this is true? One such word is tulva (computer), which literally means “number seer” or “fortune teller”.

In the case of Welsh, official terms may exist for most new inventions, but they aren’t necessarily used in everyday speech. Usage of the official terms tends to more common in formal settings. In informal situations, people often use the English terms, or alternative Welsh words they’ve coined. For example, the official term for ‘to send text message’ is anfon neges testun, but many people just say tecstio.

Source of the Welsh terms: www.technoleg-taliesin.com

This entry was posted in Language, Welsh, Words and phrases.

5 Responses to Word of the day – dylunio gwe

  1. Adam says:

    Hebrew often coins new technology words. מחשב [maxšév] is computer, from the work for “think”. Sometimes they coin a word and borrow one at the same time, and coined word doesn’t catch on. סורק [sorék] is a scanner, but most people call it a סקנר [skéneR].

    There are two words for car in common usage: מכונית [mexonit] and אוטו [oto]. Guess which word is borrowed!

  2. Mike says:

    In Japanese, they can coin new words or borrow them from other languages for technology terms. Simon already gave konpyuutaa as an example of a borrowed word. An example of a coined word is 電話 (denwa), which means telephone. Literally translated, the characters mean “electric speech.”

  3. TJ says:

    I remember chinese is full of them, and maybe they write some characters down for their phonetic values to represent the foreign name. I don’t know how to write it down, but I remember that TV is called “Electric window” and Cinema is called “Big electric window” !

  4. Simon says:

    TJ – the Chinese for TV is 電視 [电视] (diànshì) – “electric sight/vision”, film/movie is 電影 [电影] (diànyǐng) – “electric shadow”, cinema/movie theater is 電影院 [电影院] (diànyǐngyuàn) – “electric shadow courtyard”.

    Other ‘electric’ words include:
    電報 [电报] (diànbào) – telegram – “electric report”
    電唱機 [电唱机] (diànchàngjī) – record player- “electric song machine”
    電車 [电车] (diànchē) tram/streetcar – “electric cart” = train (densha) in Japanese
    電池 [电池] (diànchí) – battery – “electric pond/pool”

  5. Weili says:

    There was a brief period of time (around the late 1800′s and early 1900′s) when Chinese imported foreign words into our own vocabulary phonetically and some of these words are still used even today. However, because one of the advantages of Hanzi (characters) is that they contain meaning, therefore more often than not, when one encounters a new word, he or she can guess its meaning by the characters. But these phonetically-imported words don’t have meanings therefore making them not only difficult to remember but also… well, meaningless. This is why more foreign words are imported into Chinese through meaning, like computer = 電腦 diannao (electric brain) in Taiwan and 计算机 jisuanji (calculating machine) in mainland China.