Friday, December 12, 2008

Another International Incident

I see this morning an article on Slashdot about the claim of the Russian entrepreneur Oleg Teterin that the Russian Federal Patent Agency had given him a patent on the- I'm afraid to actually insert it now- that emoticon with the smile!!! 

Mon Dieu! what will all our chat programs do. Will our governments come to blows over this?

I have two questions:
1) What do emoticons look like when typed in Russian language- I am particularly curious about the one with it's tongue sticking out. Russian, like Greek uses "Pi" so does that mean all their cheeky little faces have forked tongues?

2) Should we developed specifically American Emoticons, such as "Howdy Partner" or "So's your mother?" That would be a graphic challenge for Mr. Brown.

The full BBC article is here but don't skip Slashdot, it is a great rss feed!

Have a beautiful day! (assume insertion of smiley face in russian)

As a post script let me tell you that my spell check is is very upset about the word emoticon, so I went to the Oxford English Dictionary and find:

A representation of a facial expression formed by a short sequence of keyboard characters (usually to be viewed sideways) and used in electronic mail, etc., to convey the sender's feelings or intended tone.
Examples are the sequences :-) and :-( representing a smile and a frown respectively.

1990 N.Y. Times 28 Jan. I. 39/4 Emoticon{em}typographical device used to indicate tone or emotion in a posting. 1994 Observer 13 Feb. (Life Suppl.) 8/3 Hence the development of ‘netiquette’, essentially on-line codes of behaviour, and ‘emoticons’ or ‘smileys’, little text ideograms which are used to signal sense (e.g. :-) to show good intentions, ;-) a wink to indicate irony). 1997 Vancouver Sun 29 Jan.D13/3 Mitchell and Murphy ask their clients to convey their emotions within square brackets rather than using the normal e-mail emoticons. 2001 Guardian (Electronic ed.) 24 Feb., Imagine the horrors of being poised over your mobile phone and suddenly forgetting the necessary emoticon.
I love the seriousness with the Oxford treats such a word.

Oh, and what about a "Cheers" emoticon?

No comments: