[Maxima] maxima pronunciation and writing
fateman at cs.berkeley.edu
Thu Dec 21 15:23:17 CST 2006
The word Macsyma was chosen by Joel Moses. He tended to chose names so that
they had at least 2 meanings. One, in this case, was (Project) MAC
Symbol(ic) Manipulator. The other, as I recall, is apparently a Hebrew word
meaning something like "wondrous". I doubt that anyone checked this at the
time, or subsequently. (We also knew that the program was going to be large;
of course in 1967, a program that was 1 megabyte of RAM was considered
Starting from 1967 or so, the name was pronounced MACsyma, with the emphasis
on the first syllable, by everyone working on the project.
My guess is that a Hebrew pronunciation would put the emphasis on the last
syllable, namely macsyMA. This was never used, even by Moses.
I have noticed that persons who are native Spanish-language speakers
pronounce the word macSYma.
I do not know how this should affect the pronunciation of "Maxima".
The simplest solution to fixing the search problem (Maxima is a computer
system, but it is also an automobile model from Nissan, etc.) is to use
Macsyma. I am not a trademark lawyer, so I can't comment on the feasibility
of doing this.
Note that Mathematica is a very common term in mathematics journal titles,
And MathematicaR is a registered trademark of Mathematica Policy Research,
Inc. of Princeton, NJ (USA).
Also note that names are frequently pronounced differently in different
countries, without much confusion. The Nikon camera company presumably is
called NEE-kon in Japanese. Braun is presumably not BRAWN in Germany, but
BROWN. You don't even have to change countries... In NY city there is a
Houston St, pronounced HOW-stun. But in Texas the city is HYU-stun. Etc.
Best wishes for the new year...
> -----Original Message-----
> From: maxima-bounces at math.utexas.edu [mailto:maxima-
> bounces at math.utexas.edu] On Behalf Of pol
> Sent: Thursday, December 14, 2006 6:57 AM
> To: maxima at math.utexas.edu
> Subject: [Maxima] maxima pronunciation and writing
> Hi all,
> My understanding is that 'maxima' should be pronounced with the stress
> falling upon the second syllable.
> If that is the correct pronunciation, what do you think about capitalizing
> the x, to tell MaXima as different from the generic noun Maxima?
> Maxima mailing list
> Maxima at math.utexas.edu
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