HongKongers, iMac, iPod, and HomePod

You would be wrong to think this is a post about Apple’s iMac (introduced in 1998, 18 years ago), iPod (introduced in 2001, 15 years ago), or even HomePod! Quoting (iGuardian News introducing HomePod on June 5, 2017, that is just today). to illustrate what I really want to talk about.

“Introducing the HomePod

The HomePod has seven tweeters and four-inch woofer; it has an A8 chip living inside it, and uses that to make the sound “spatially aware”. That’s a feature Sonos has too, letting the speakers adjust their output to, say, push the vocals down the centre of the room while bouncing the bass off the wall. […]”

Instead, the focus is Etymology!

“Etymology is the study of the history of words, their origins, and how their form and meaning have changed over time. By extension, the term “the etymology (of a word)” means the origin of the particular word.”

Some months before the word HongKonger started to be accepted as a word by dictionaries like Oxford to describe “a native or inhabitant of Hong Kong, I had already started to use it like that. One thing that I’m still insisting is to spell HongKonger with a capitalized “K” (instead of the dictionary version of “Hongkonger”).

Which brings me back to how we spell iMac, iPod, and HomePod with the capitalized “M” for iMac, “P” for iPod, and then “H” plus “P” for HomePod. At the end of the day, the rules of how we spell words are determined by human convention. And dictionaries are tools that reflect our usages of words. So I will keep on spelling HongKonger(s) with a capitalized “H” plus “K” just like HomePod and I will wait for dictionaries to catch up. :)

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