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 @, what is this symbol actually?

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fahmi
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PostSubject: @, what is this symbol actually?   Sat Aug 30, 2008 11:00 am

The funny little a with its tail circling back around it is probably one of the most commonly used symbols today. So it is truly amazing to learn that there is no official, universal name for it. The most accepted term, even in many other languages, is to call it the at sign. But there are dozens of different words used to describe it. A lot of languages use words that associate the shape of the symbol with some type of animal.

Here are a few examples of the many exotic terms associated with the @ symbol:

* apestaart - Dutch for "monkey's tail"
* snabel - Danish for "elephant's trunk"
* kissanhnta - Finnish for "cat's tail"
* klammeraffe - German for "hanging monkey"
* kukac - Hungarian for "worm"
* dalphaengi - Korean for "snail"
* grisehale - Norwegian for "pig's tail"
* sobachka - Russian for "little dog"

Before it became the standard symbol for e-mail, the @ symbol was typically used to indicate the cost or weight of something. For example, if you bought five oranges for $1.25 each, you might write it as 5 oranges @ $1.25 ea. It is still used in this manner on a variety of forms and invoices around the world.

The actual origin of the symbol is uncertain. It was used by monks making copies of books before the invention of the printing press. Since every word had to be painstakingly transcribed by hand for each copy of a book, the monks that performed the copying duties looked for ways to reduce the number of individual strokes per word for common words. So, the word at became a single stroke of the pen as @ instead of three strokes. While it doesn't seem like much today, it made a huge difference to the men who spent their lives copying manuscripts!

Another origin tale states that the @ symbol was used as an abbreviation for the word amphora, which was the unit of measurement used to determine the amount held by the large terra cotta jars that were used to ship grain, spices and wine. Giorgio Stabile, an Italian scholar, discovered this use of the @ symbol in a letter written in 1536 by a Florentine trader named Francesco Lapi. It seems likely that some industrious trader saw the @ symbol in a book transcribed by monks using the symbol and appropriated it for use as the amphora abbreviation. This would also explain why it became common to use the symbol in relation to quantities of something.
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PostSubject: Re: @, what is this symbol actually?   Sat Aug 30, 2008 11:06 am

tambahan info, dapet dari web laen. gw kurang setuju sama yang deskripsi untuk indonesia....moso @ di indo jadi = "uh" ???

The "@" symbol. . .
used by grocers and accountants throughout the English-speaking world to indicate a rate, or cost per unit, as in "10 gal @ $3.95/gal" [ten gallons at three dollars and ninety-five cents per gallon] has become the de facto delimiter in e-mail addresses, separating the user's name from the domain name.

Although the change from at meaning "for a given amount per" to at meaning "in a specified (electronic) location" comes fairly naturally to English speakers, it does not for native speakers of other languages, for whom neither "at" nor @ meant anything until e-mail came around.

Indeed, a fair number of internet users live in countries that don't use the same alphabet English does (Japan, China, former republics of the Soviet Union including Russia, and Arabic-speaking countries, to name some major ones), and where the keyboards did not conveniently include the @ character until after it's widespread use on the internet made it a necessity.

As a result, while in some languages @ is simply called "at," in others, a wide variety of interesting nicknames have been developed for this little symbol. Most are based on the shape of the character, others are more abstract. Some are original and unique, others are derived from other languages. Some have ancient antecedents, others are still "works in progress." (Internet users in Sri Lanka are even now trying to decide what to call @). In some countries, a variety of ideosyncratic names have appeared simultaneously, while in others, government beauracracies are charged with selecting an "official" term.

Metaphors range from animals (snail, worm, little dog, horse) to body parts (elephant's trunk, monkey's tail, cat's foot, pig's ear) to food (rollmops herring, strudel, cinnamon roll, pretzel). This article includes a sampling of the many names of @, world-wide.

Afrikaans [South Africa]
Afrikaans is spoken mainly by the decendents of Dutch settlers in South Africa. In Afrikaans, some people have begun to call @ "aapstert," [monkey's tail], also a term of endearment for someone who's made a silly mistake. Note that Afrikaans is closely related to Dutch, where @ is called, among other things, "apestaart" meaning, of course, monkey's tail.

Arabic
The various dialects of Arabic are, of course, written in Arabic script, using a very different alphabet from English, French, and other European languages. The @ sign does not appear on manual Arabic keyboards at all, but it is found on dual--English and Arabic-- computer and word processor keyboards. As such, the only use of @ in Arabic is in e-mail addresses. Many people do not even notice it on the keyboard, and do not have a name for it. Most Arab speaking e-mailers either call @ "at" or translate English "at" into Arabic, calling it "fi."

However, one person called it "othon" [ ear ]. Another simply called it "a."

Cantonese [Hong Kong]
Most things relating to computers and electronics in Hong Kong, until recently a British Crown Colony, are heavily influenced by native speakers of English. In Hong Kong, most people call it "the at sign" pronounced as in England and the U.S.

Catalan [Catalonia (Spain)]
Most people call it "arrova" (the "rr" is rolled and the "v" is pronounced like a very soft English "b"). In Spanish, the same symbol and name are used to indicate a unit of weight, (1 arrova = approximately 25 U.S. pounds). Like many Spanish terms, this one comes originally from Arabic.

Czech (Czech Republic)
In Czech, @ is called zavinac (pronounced ZAHV-in-ach), meaning "rollmops," or pickled herring. Perhaps the shape suggests herring packed tightly in a jar!

Danish
In Danish it's either called "alfa-tegn" [alpha-sign] or "snabel," [elephant's trunk]. Obviously the former is the more formal useage, but the latter term is used most often when refering to e-mail addresses.

The @ sign is also sometimes called "grisehale" [pig's tail].

Dutch
The imaginations of Dutch speaking people seem to have worked overtime to come up with names for this little symbol. The original name was "een a met een slinger" [an a with a swing ], but was soon more popularly called either "apestaart" or the diminutive "apestaartje" [(little) monkey's tail] or "slingeraap" [swinging monkey"]

Other names attested:

* "a-krol" or "a-krul," [curly a].
* "slinger-atje" [little swing a]
* "apeklootje" [little monkey's testicle].

Since nearly everyone in the Netherlands also speaks English, and as more and more people go on-line, the English term is increasingly recognized.

English
Some English speakers call @ "commercial-a" or "commercial-at." Also heard in English:

* mercantile symbol
* commercial symbol
* scroll, or scroll-a
* arobase
* each
* about
* vortex
* whorl
* whirlpool
* cyclone
* snail
* schnable
* cabbage

FORTH. In the computer programming language FORTH, @ means "fetch."

(Net)Hack. The old (1960's mainframe-based) computer game Hack, now called NetHack, uses ASCII characters to indicate various "dungeons and dragons" - type creatures. For example, a capital "K" represents a Kobold. Evidently, there are some people who use @ online to indicate a human being, as the game does.

Finnish
Many Finnish terms for @ are connected with cats. Not content with naming the sign for what it looks like, Finnish names it for what it looks like sounds like. In addition to "kissanhnta [cat's tail], "miau," "miumau," and "miuku" are all "miau merkki" [meow marks] in Finnish. Other terms from Finnish include "apinanhanta" [a monkey's tail], or "hiirenhanta" [mouse's tail]. Some "computer people" use the English word "at."

French
In French, @ is called "arobase." Probably derived from Spanish "arroba," the word has no other meaning; it is simply the name of the symbol. It is also referred to as "un a commercial" [business a], "a enroule" [coiled a], and sometimes "escargot"[snail] or "petit escargot" [little snail].

Frisian (Friesland, Frisian Islands)
This germanic language is spoken on the Frisian Islands in the North Sea off the coast of Holland, Germany, and Denmark. In Frisian @ is called either "aapke" [little monkey] or "apesturtsje" [little monkey's tail].

German
In German, @ is most often called either "Affenschwanz" [monkey's tail] or "Klammeraffe" [hanging monkey]. This is also a term of zoological classification, for various South American monkeys, including the spider monkey.

Some people call it the "Ohr" [ear].

Greek
In modern Greek, the equivalent Greek expression " sto" is used, a direct translation of the English term [a].

Hebrew
In Hebrew, it's most often either a "shablul" or "shablool"[snail] or a " shtrudl" [strudel, that is, the pastry]. In both cases, it's something that is rolled up.

Hungarian
Hungarians evidently don't think much of e-mail, as they've elected to call the @ sign "kukac" pronounced KOO-kots [worm or maggot].

Indonesian
In Indonesian, @ doesn't really have a name. It's simply pronounced [ uh ] in e-mail addresses, like "username-uh-company-dot-com."


Italian
Italians call @ "chiocciola" pronounced "kee-AH-cho-la" [the snail], and sometimes, "a commerciale" [business a].

Japanese
Japanese borrows words freely from foreign languages, though usually with a distinctly Japanese pronunciation. (For example, English [baseball] is rendered [beisiboru]. Japanese accounting and computer people normally call @ "atto maaku" ["at" mark].

Korean
Many Koreans call it "dalphaengi" [snail].

Lithuanian
The "official" name for @ in Lithuanian is "comercial et," but most people call it "the e-mail sign" (in Lithuanian, of course). Some Lithuanian e-mailers have confused @ with &, calling it "ir" [and].

Mandarin Chinese (Taiwan)
In Taiwan Mandarin Chinese, @ is called "xiao lao-shu" [little mouse] or "lao shu-hao" [mouse sign]. It is also called "at-hao" [at sign] or "lao shu-hao" [mouse sign].

Norwegian
In Norwegian, @ is called either "grisehale" [pig's tail] or "kro/llalfa" [curly alpha]. In academic circles, however, the English term "at" is widely used.

Polish
In Poland most e-mailers call @ "malpa" [monkey].

Other terms: "kotek" [little cat] and"ucho s'wini" [pig's ear].

NOTE: What does the mouse say? The mouse says "click?"

Portuguese
In Portuguese, it's called "arroba," as in Spanish. The symbol is used to indicate a unit of weight with the same name ( 1 arroba = 25 U. S. pounds). Like many Spanish terms, this one comes originally from Arabic.

Romanian
In Romanian, @ is called "la," a direct translation of English "at."

Russian
In Russian, the "official" term for @ is "a kommercheskoe" [commercial a], but it is usually called "sobachka" [little dog or "doggie"].

Other terms:

* obezjana [the monkey]
* pljushka [a Russian pastry]

Serbian
A variety of terms show up in Serbian. "Majmun" [monkey] is the root of several. This word is borrowed from Turkish. "majmun" [monkey] "majmunski rep" [monkey tail] "majmunsko-a" [monkey-ish a] "ludo-a" [crazy a] "et" [ a ] adapted from English.

Slovak (Slovakia)
In Slovak, like Czech, @ is called "zavinac" (pronounced ZAHV-in-ach), meaning "rollmops," or pickled herring.

Slovenian
The word in Slovene is "afna." Perhaps this is a loan word from German, where the mark is called, among other things, "affenschwanz" [monkey's tail].

There is a similar word in Slovenian, "afna" meaning "a woman who overdresses, applies too much make-up, etc."

Spanish
In Spanish, it's called "arroba." The symbol is used to indicate a unit of weight with the same name ( 1 arroba = 25 U. S. pounds). Like many Spanish terms, this one comes originally from Arabic.

Swedish
E-mailers in Sweden have the greatest variety of terms available for refering to @. The official term recommended by the Svenska Spreknemnden (The Swedish Language Board) is "snabel-a" [trunk-a, or "a with an elephant's trunk], and this is still the most common. At one time, the board attempted to introduce a more serious name, "at-tecken" [at-sign] but it didn't really catch on.

Another imaginative name sometimes heard in Swedish is "kanelbulle" [a kind of cinnamon roll]. Other candidates:

* "apsvans" [monkey's tail]
* "elefantora" [an elephant's ear]
* "kattfot" [cat-foot]
* "kattsvans" [cat's tail]
* "kringla [pretzel]

Thai
Thai does not have an official name for @, but some people call it " 'ai tua yiukyiu" [the wiggling worm-like character].

Turkish
Most Turkish e-mailers call @ "kulak" [ear] or even "Ohr" ["ear" in German]. Some have suggested calling @ "at" which sounds the same, of course, but in Turkish means "horse."

Sources
The Linguist List, http://www.linguistlist.org
The Pronunciation Guide,
http://www.ling.nwu.edu/ ~sburke/ stuff/ pronunciation-guide.txt
380 Internet tips & trucs, by Henk Ellermann, Amsterdam 1995
The Oxford English Dictionary

1997 Scott Herron, except as indicated.
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PostSubject: Re: @, what is this symbol actually?   Sat Aug 30, 2008 11:27 am

kok aneh?

selama ini di indonesia gw blm pernah tuh baca: mengund@, ad@, jat@, gad@, ah@ah@ah@ah
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PostSubject: Re: @, what is this symbol actually?   Sat Aug 30, 2008 7:45 pm

fahmi wrote:
Japanese
Japanese borrows words freely from foreign languages, though usually with a distinctly Japanese pronunciation. (For example, English [baseball] is rendered [beisiboru]. Japanese accounting and computer people normally call @ "atto maaku" ["at" mark].

Salah tuh contohnya, mereka kan dah ada [yakyu] kenapa harus make [baseball] lagi. Kalo mau [aisu kurimu] aja.

Itu "uh" dibacanya emang 'uh' ato 'ah'? Kalo ah makin aneh lagi sih, gw dari dulu taunya itu 'a bunder'. Kalo mau kasih nama hewan, gimana kalo 'ekor orangutan'?
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PostSubject: Re: @, what is this symbol actually?   Mon Sep 01, 2008 2:58 pm

berarti ntar ada alamat website yang berubah jadi @-oh.com.. lol!
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PostSubject: Re: @, what is this symbol actually?   Thu Sep 11, 2008 8:19 pm

wakakakak ati2 tu website gak bener, masih banyak asian cik di tempat lain kok.. apalagi di ds tercinta..
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PostSubject: Re: @, what is this symbol actually?   Fri Sep 12, 2008 2:11 pm

ds ribet, gak diinvite2.. (OOT dan curcol..)
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