IT jargon in Japanese

Recently I became curious about Hadoop and Cassandra and decided to read more about them. The current trend in information technology creates a demand for different approaches for data storage. With an unimaginable amount of data flowing through the Internet (think Facebook, Twitter and Google), there has been a demand for distributed data storage which is also reliable and fast.

Hadoop is, simply put, a framework for creating a cluster of worker nodes, managed by a master node, which distributes tasks among the worker nodes. It is maintained by the Apache Software Foundation, and runs on Java.

Cassandra is a distributed and scalable database system, open-sourced by Facebook in 2008, and now maintained by the Apache Software Foundation. It is totally different from a relational database system, which has been a hype in the ’90s. Everything I learned about databases, did not apply to Cassandra.

So I decided to buy a book – the O’Reilly book on Cassandra – in Japanese.

Even though I live and work in Japan, my work environment has been mainly English, so I have never experienced what it is like to discuss software engineering in Japanese. There have been a few odd projects where I had to interact with a Japanese company delivering some API, with documentation in Japanese, but they were pretty straight-forward, and not too technical. And that is why I wanted to read about it in Japanese, to get myself acquainted with the Japanese jargon.

It was very interesting to note that the Japanese word for “value” is 値 ne. To me, this character has very strong connotations with the word “price” as that is 値段 nedan in Japanese. When you think about it, the word “value” is also very much related to “price”, but in the context of programming I totally forget about this meaning. It is funny to see how two totally unrelated languages have something in common.

Here is an overview of IT jargon I ran across so far:

階層型データベース kaisougata dētabēsu – hierarchical database
正規化 seikika – normalization
一貫性 ikkansei – consistency
高負荷 koufuka – high-load, high-capacity
垂直方向のスケーリング suichoku houkou no sukēringu – vertical scaling
筐体 kyoutai – (server) unit
分散キャッシュ bunsan kyasshu – distributed cache
冗長化 jouchouka – duplicated, redundant
伝播 denpa – propagation
多次元 tajigen – multidimensional
配列 hairetsu – array
格納 kakunou – storage
属性 zokusei – attribute
識別子 shikibetsushi – discriminator
透過的 toukateki – transparently
複製 fukusei – replication
順序 junjo – ordered
指定 shitei – assignment
指向 shikou – pointer
継承 keishou – inherit from

3 thoughts on “IT jargon in Japanese”

  1. dētabēsu, sukēringu; als je weet dat de “u” (vrijwel) niet wordt uitgesproken en het verschil tussen “l” en “r” onoverkoombaar is in het Japans, zijn deze 2 Japanse woorden natuurlijk niet meer dan de fonetische overzetting van de Engelse woorden

  2. Precies :) Ik heb het alleen maar getransscribeerd vanuit het Japanse alfabet. Veel van zulke woorden worden uit het Engels overgezet, maar er zijn ook Nederlandse, Duitse en Portugese voorbeelden van zulke overzettingen.

    メス mesu – operatie-mes (medische wetenschap werden door de Nederlanders overgebracht op de Japanners in de 17e eeuw)
    アルバイト arubaito – part-time werk, uit het Duits, Arbeit
    カステラ kasutera – gebak, uit het Portugees, pão de castela

    Voor meer informatie over zulke woorden: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gairaigo

What are your thoughts?