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Old 04-20-2006   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmattock
Doug, please trust me when I say I was writing regular expressions and teaching librarians how to do internet searches before there was a world-wide-web. I'm an early adopter, my first Usenet post is dated 1991, my first dialup internet account was in 1985. I was there when Yahoo was created, and way before Google. I know how to use it.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&l...22&btnG=Search

Returns a Newsweek story on the Sony spyware debacle.
A 1997 story on the Sony Navicam (whatever that is).
Remote Control for Sony A/V equipment

And so on. The first mention of the Sony a is...ah, after four pages I gave up. None that I saw.

Now, could I have crafted a query expression that would have found just what I wanted? You bet. At least I think I could. But I won't bother. And why should I? I'm the consumer. If Sony wants to advertise to me, they can find me, or make it very easy for me to find them. A findable Google search does that.
Still searching for the wrong thing, misspelled essentially. Try this.... http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&l...B1&btnG=Search
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Old 04-20-2006   #42
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Konica-Minolta and Minolta cameras all have the α (alpha) in their names in Japan.

Maybe Sony would market it as "alpha" here, who knows?
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Old 04-21-2006   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dougg
Still searching for the wrong thing, misspelled essentially. Try this.... http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&l...B1&btnG=Search
Yes, that works fine. And Joe Sixpack is going to remember to do that how, exactly? Most Americans don't even know that a Greek letter is anything more than something a fraternity has hanging from the second floor of their house.

Few people, and I mean very few, know how to even enter a non alpha-numeric character from their keyboard.

Again, if the point is to be found - and I think it must be in this day and age - then Sony is flat-out wrong and stupid. That you or I can figure out how to type in an aleph or a carat or a copyright symbol is proof of our geekitude, it does not help Sony in the slightest.

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Old 04-21-2006   #44
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Bill, while you are right with the pronounciation of these names, i think you are too pessimistic w respect to the search, to be found stuff. The "a"should refer to a line of cameras, the real stuff probably will be stg like "sony a7" or "sony a300" or such. Or alpha if you prefer.
As soon as there'll be stg posted on the Web about the products, it will be just as easy to find it as it is for "leica m6" or "pentax *ist".

And back to pronounciation, the "most americans" you talk about probably can't pronounce Angenieux or Voigtlander properly, neither Zeiss Ikon or even a simple Nikon. Still they manage somehow. If they have problems saying alpha they might just say "a", or just plain "the new sony dslr".
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Old 04-21-2006   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pherdinand
Bill, while you are right with the pronounciation of these names, i think you are too pessimistic w respect to the search, to be found stuff. The "a"should refer to a line of cameras, the real stuff probably will be stg like "sony a7" or "sony a300" or such. Or alpha if you prefer.
As soon as there'll be stg posted on the Web about the products, it will be just as easy to find it as it is for "leica m6" or "pentax *ist".

And back to pronounciation, the "most americans" you talk about probably can't pronounce Angenieux or Voigtlander properly, neither Zeiss Ikon or even a simple Nikon. Still they manage somehow. If they have problems saying alpha they might just say "a", or just plain "the new sony dslr".
If they had just given it a unique or simple name, they'd have avoided all such silly business (people having to 'settle on' what to call the danged thing). But they had to be all cutesy-pie.

Ticks me off.

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Old 04-21-2006   #46
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Hm, come to think of it, maybe they just want to make sure that only people capable and willing to read and understand the manual buy that contraption?
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Old 04-21-2006   #47
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This reminds me of a bumper sticker I've once seen on an old Toyota Corola.

"I wanted a Lamborghini but I couldn't pronounce it, so I got this one instead"
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Old 04-21-2006   #48
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So the Leica "M" is just as stupid as the Sony here?

The "M" has stood the test of time....

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmattock
If they had just given it a unique or simple name, they'd have avoided all such silly business (people having to 'settle on' what to call the danged thing). But they had to be all cutesy-pie.
It's tricky labeling a new product with a recongnizable name. You don't want a name whic people will associate with a prior experience. It might give your products an impression that you don't really want.

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Old 04-21-2006   #49
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Shows I'm a linear thinker.
I'm a curvilinear thinker, ::wink wink nudge nudge::
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Old 04-21-2006   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ywenz
So the Leica "M" is just as stupid as the Sony here?

The "M" have stood the test of time....
The Leica M series uses common alphanumerics. Easy to search on.

"Leica M" or "Leica M7" etc. And the name Leica is not as common as Sony.

If Leica's brand name was "Smith," then yes, "M" would be stupid. The "Smith M" would bring back all kinds of stupid and unwanted results.

Sony is a huge megacorp that makes everything from hair curlers to God-knows-what. "Sony a" by itself is dumb - if only because "a" is a word on it's own in English and a numbe of other western languages.

And using a Greek letter alpha (α) is just asking for trouble. Cutesy beyond belief, and Joe Sixpack can neither pronounce it nor enter it into Google for a proper search.

In any case, the Leica M was so-named long before there was an Internet or search engines to be considered as a valuable adjunct to modern marketing techniques.

Believe me, marketing majors learn how to leverage search engines for the benefit of their products these days. Viral marketing, seeded blogs, the 'net is being exploited for all it is worth. "Sony a" brings back dreck, so the name was a very poor choice.

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Old 04-21-2006   #51
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Oh, I only read your original post, which didn't mention the search engine implications.. but I agree. However I also think sony will come out with the Sony a300 etc... so the concern here is really premature. I'm sure they have marketing people that know better than anyone of use here.
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Old 04-21-2006   #52
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Well, I must be as daft as the boys and girls at Sony because I like 'Alpha'. I don't find greek letters exotic at all, having used them constantly in 10th grade geometry class, and quite a bit in later math and science classes as well. Also, ever heard the phrase "the alpha and the omega," which means the beginning and the end? I think 'Alpha' is a nice choice for a beginning. I hope they stay in the game for a long while and we don't see their Omega dslr anytime soon.

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Old 04-21-2006   #53
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I think the dumbest-name-given-to-a-product title should go to Ford Motor Company, for their 'Ka' model. Pronounced 'car'. Most people end up referring to it as the Ford Kay Ay.


Ps. Lets not forget Pentax used to make a 35mm *ist.
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Old 04-21-2006   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ywenz
It's tricky labeling a new product with a recongnizable name. You don't want a name whic people will associate with a prior experience. It might give your products an impression that you don't really want.
A clean break with the past? Sure, if the model name of Konica-Minolta's Maxxum has a negative connotation. I'm not sure it does, but fair enough.

"Sony 9D DSLR" works. Next step up from the Maxxum 7D, yes? And the only search results I see are speculation about the α.

Or call it the Sony Glarnstag. Totally unique. Pronounceable. Already phonetic. Every search will come back with your product, no matter how stupidly mispelled or what badly-formed search parameters are used.

Good Lord. Sony should send me a million dollars now. I'm doing their work for them.

The Sony Glarnstag. I like it.

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Old 04-21-2006   #55
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Don't overestimate marketing majors!

They are the guys who name a Mitsubishi SUV Pajero or try to sell a car named no va in Mexico.
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Old 04-21-2006   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy K
I think the dumbest-name-given-to-a-product title should go to Ford Motor Company, for their 'Ka' model. Pronounced 'car'. Most people end up referring to it as the Ford Kay Ay.
.
Not here, it is exactly the pronounciation of the letter K in german :-)
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Old 04-21-2006   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhartse
Well, I must be as daft as the boys and girls at Sony because I like 'Alpha'. I don't find greek letters exotic at all, having used them constantly in 10th grade geometry class, and quite a bit in later math and science classes as well. Also, ever heard the phrase "the alpha and the omega," which means the beginning and the end? I think 'Alpha' is a nice choice for a beginning. I hope they stay in the game for a long while and we don't see their Omega dslr anytime soon.

Duane
You're educated. Joe Sixpack is not. There are more Joe Sixpacks out there than you or me.

And go ahead and type in a α symbol. Yeah.

Even if you're net-savvy enough to know the trick, it just means that you're a clever little monkey. Joe Sixpack isn't. He or she will not manage it.

And Sony is not calling the stupid thing the "Sony Alpha." That would be easy. Read the advert on the side of a bus, 'Sony Alpha' and everybody gets it. Now read the advert on the subway wall for a 'Sony α'. Nobody knows what to call it except the educated or the Frat boys (not necessarily the same). Is it the Sony ah? The Sony Aaaay? Is this a Fonzi thing? I would not get 'alpha' out of seeing Sony α for the first time, and neither will Joe Sixpack.

Lowest common denominator. "Geico - so easy, a caveman could do it." Geico is glad you're educated, but they need all the maroons out there to come to their website too.

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Old 04-21-2006   #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy K
I think the dumbest-name-given-to-a-product title should go to Ford Motor Company, for their 'Ka' model. Pronounced 'car'. Most people end up referring to it as the Ford Kay Ay.


Ps. Lets not forget Pentax used to make a 35mm *ist.
I've never seen the Ford Ka - they don't have them in the USA, I think. But I'd agree, very dumb.

And I believe that Pentax still sells the *ist film SLR, and introduced it at the same time, more or less, as the *ist D digital. A dumb name for either, IMHO.

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Old 04-21-2006   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmattock
Cutesy beyond belief, and Joe Sixpack can neither pronounce it nor enter it into Google for a proper search.
Just stretching your sample here: how would you know if Joe Sixpack can spell Joe Sixpack, pronounce Joe Sixpack, and even search for Joe Sixpack in Google? That argument then implodes.
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Old 04-21-2006   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Socke
Don't overestimate marketing majors!

They are the guys who name a Mitsubishi SUV Pajero or try to sell a car named no va in Mexico.
LOL! El Chevy No Va. Or in Argentina, the toothpaste Colgate. I also heard of when they translated Electrolux's slogan directly: "Our products really suck".
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Old 04-21-2006   #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmattock
And go ahead and type in a α symbol. Yeah.

Even if you're net-savvy enough to know the trick, it just means that you're a clever little monkey. Joe Sixpack isn't. He or she will not manage it.
Well, even though the name is Sony α, I would expect people to actually refer to it as the Sony alpha, just as people refer to the Olympus -II as the mju-II. (Though Olympus, perhaps wisely, apparently believed Americans were too stupid for this and called it the Stylus Epic in the U.S. ) I would agree, though, that the name does cause unnecessary difficulty which works against the product. Now if they don't use 'alpha' in addition to 'α' on web pages that will be boneheaded.

Also, while Joe Sixpack may have trouble with the name, his kids probably won't. Almost everyone is required to study geometry these days, unlike when you and I went to school.

I have to admit that the name is already causing me some difficulty, as I can't get my alpha to look like an alpha here--it insists on looking more like a lowercase 'a'.

Duane

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Old 04-21-2006   #62
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Ford Ka is just a "small Ford" in hungarian. Which fits perfectly.
You guys should all learn hungarian.
:P
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Old 04-21-2006   #63
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Quote:
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Ford Ka is just a "small Ford" in hungarian. Which fits perfectly.
You guys should all learn hungarian.:P
Too bad Ford didn't test-market the Ka in Boston...


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Old 04-21-2006   #64
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Ford Ka, I pronouce it "Kah" is a catchy name.

Stupid names are the likes of "Summicron" or "Summilux".."Elmarit" etc... Just refer it to the lens as f/2 or f/1.4 sheesh!
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Old 04-21-2006   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabrielma
Just stretching your sample here: how would you know if Joe Sixpack can spell Joe Sixpack, pronounce Joe Sixpack, and even search for Joe Sixpack in Google? That argument then implodes.
Ask all your coworkers if they know what Google is. Ask them if they know how to use it. Then ask them if they know how to search for a Greek symbol for alpha.

I know this will work - you work with a flock of seagulls. So do I. So does everybody.

Possible exception if you're a tech dweeb and work in a bullpen full of coders.

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Old 04-21-2006   #66
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The problem with the Ford Ka, is you end up in Abbot and Costello type conversations with their owners:

"What car do you drive?"
"A Ka."
"Yes but which one?"
"A Ford Ka."
"Yes, but which model?"
"A Ka."
"yes, but WHICH ONE??"
"A SportKa..."

Ps, Bill, I think the 35mm *ist is now discontinued. Which is a shame because it was a very nice little SLR.
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Old 04-21-2006   #67
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When it was launched int he UK there was a very short-lived effort by Ford to convince eberyone it wasn't pronounced 'Kah'. It failed.

FUnky looks (took a while to get used to) and kinda fun to drive - sort of like a go-kart, point'n'shoot Small and light, it accelerates well even with a small engine, but rattles lke you wouldn't believe by the time you go over 60 mph. I may or may not know what the one I was driving topped out at, and I may or may not know that it was like sitting on a washing machine in its spin-cycle. Your hands feel all funny from the rattle through the wheel.

/edit: to say I've made to many typos to be bothered fixing!
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Old 04-21-2006   #68
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Ps, Bill, I think the 35mm *ist is now discontinued. Which is a shame because it was a very nice little SLR.
ist is back in the form of the Samsun SLR..
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Old 04-21-2006   #69
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Possible exception if you're a tech dweeb and work in a bullpen full of coders.
emm...err... ::whistling::
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Old 04-21-2006   #70
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Alpha has been the name of the minolta cameras in Japan since AF first hit the market..

This is not a new term... Just not known as well in the USA.

When I saw "Alpha" I has happy.... I have tons of Minolta glass. All "A" mount
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Old 04-21-2006   #71
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Alpha? Isn't that a Polaroid Camera?

SX70 Alpha. OOOhhhh.. Top shutter speed of 1/180th of a second, much higher than the original SX70's 1/100th. Alpha.

SX70 Sonar. That is a great name for an AF camera. Unless you are shooting through glass.
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Old 04-22-2006   #72
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I look forward to matching my Omega (Seamaster) with a (Sony) Alpha 9D, so please make it titanium.

Meanwhile, I tend to side with Bill in this argument. I don't even understand whether Sony intends to use that moniker around the world, or reuse Dynax and Maxxum wherever applicable.

I too remember fondly how google.stanford.edu was incredibly better than altavista circa 1997. But then, I didn't major in marketing.
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Old 04-22-2006   #73
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Quote:
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Alpha has been the name of the minolta cameras in Japan since AF first hit the market..

This is not a new term... Just not known as well in the USA.

When I saw "Alpha" I has happy.... I have tons of Minolta glass. All "A" mount
That' right.
I'd say Alpha Max 7 was the best looking Minolta SLR.
The A 5D, 7D, Sony 828, R1, H1 along w a few KMinolta Startrek like Z d cameras looked uninvolving and disappointing. Canon Nikon DSlrs still designed along the film Slr look, I hope Sony; an 'electronic' company jump out of their 'applience' design mind and gives us some handsome Sony DSlrs.

Very strange that Pentax D *ist series cameras are aimming for as 'family' friendly cameras (look at their ads in Asahi, Nihon and a bounch of Digital dedicated photo mags) but w an un-pronunceable name, strange.
Eos digital Rebels are called 'Kiss', Minolta's 5D was called 'Sweet', Nikon has U, U2(N-55 or 75) in Japan...
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Old 04-22-2006   #74
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The 7D looks very close to the Max 7.
Both are ok cameras.
The 9 is the best that they made.
I would never sell mine.
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Old 04-22-2006   #75
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Originally Posted by gregarpp
The 7D looks very close to the Max 7.
Both are ok cameras.
The 9 is the best that they made.
I would never sell mine.
Strange, Alpha 7d and Alpha 7 looked very much different to me...the front prism where 'KMinolta' name is on 7d is much narrower than that on the A-7, w the hand grip, the A-7 looked a lot balanced.
Alpha 9 (1998) was compared to F6 in 2-2005/Asahi Camera. Conclution? The F6 is a Alpha 9 II...
Minolta seems always played kid brother to the big Canon and Nikon, A 9 is a great machine, it's that 'rectangular prism' on A 9 that throws me off balance (remember Minolta XM?), I'm not too crazy about 'gorilla head' prism on the F6 either. 'Grorilla head' prism was not that pronunced on D2x D70s or D50, and was almost gone on D200.
The chrome d50 is 'cute'. The Canon 10D, too bad it's 'out-dated' now, was a handsome camera. Just my humble observation...
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