Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Owning a Letter

Back about 13 years ago, it was in vogue to name everything having to do with technology by taking a normal word and adding a lower-case "e" to the beginning.  eBusiness, eCommerce, e-this and e-that.  My best guess is around 8 years ago or so, adding "X" to the beginning (or chopping off letters in the word before the "X") got popular, along with adding a lower-case "i".  Apple has co-opted the "i" with the release of the iMac, later iPod, and other iProducts.

In the past year or so, Microsoft has made a push to own the letter "Y".  They changed their MSN Messenger product to something called Lync, and there was another one recently but I didn't catch the name.  In fact, I suspect they bought Skype because of the y in it, perhaps as part of their plan to own that letter.

I don't know how long this trend of trying to own a letter has been going on, but I think it's safe to say perhaps about 15 years or more.  It appears to be successful.  Apple has been so prevalent with the i that people think Apple owns the letter i in front of any word, not just iPhone, iPod, iPad and iMac (BTW, I HATE it when people spell Mac "MAC").  However, iLuv, iHome, and iMedic are all not owned by Apple, to name just a few.

My prediction is the next letter to be owned will be the Q.  This is one of the underrated letters in the English language.  I mean, look at its phoneme - coopted by C and K, Q has had to work hard to carve a niche for itself by partnering with the letter U most of the time.  Q is also nice and round, with an elegant flourish hanging off its end.  It has a royal feel to it (almost a queenly touch), and is useful when you are very thirsty (it quenches).  Qdoba is on to something.  Next we will be taking a qNap (no relation to the NAS devices), buying a qCar, perhaps even conducting qBusiness (after we are done with our iBusiness).



  1. Once Again, another outstanding insight from a true visionier. Finally; Q-PDM to the Rescue! Long live the Q-uotes from Randtastic C-Town IN Hustler...

  2. Vielen Dank for the compliment, Tina!! I think I need a qBeer.

  3. See, here's another example: http://www.qpopshop.com/