Names of Persons in Dictionaries of Computer Science

  • Alvydas Umbrasas


    The field of terminology research covers various concepts, but names of persons are among things which are rarely discussed in the context of terminology. It has been noted in works of Lithuanian terminologists that in general it is problematic to attribute names of persons to terminology. However, in some fields such names comprise a significant part of terminology. The assumption can be made that systems of terms naming persons are more developed in social sciences. The article deals with terms naming persons which were collected from dictionaries of computer science. An attempt is made to establish what names are covered by terminography of computer science, to analyse their form in respect of word-formation and origin (the novelty and uniqueness of terms are taken into consideration when comparing with other fields). The research shows that the majority of names of persons presented in the dictionaries of computer science are suffix derivatives, though very few of them are neologisms which have been specially created for the nominations needs of computer science. Most often derivatives are taken from other fields, i.e. transterminologized. Derivatives of Lithuanian origin prevail, but hybrids are also found. Borrowings which name persons and are included in Lithuanian terminological dictionaries as terms of computer science are also rather rare. The majority of borrowings are also used in other fields, i.e. they are not unique in the context of computer science. For the purposes of translation not only terms of computer science are included in dictionaries of this field but also words and phrases from various software and other computer related contexts. As a result, not all names of persons presented in such dictionaries are true terms of computer science. The necessity to include some names of a more general nature in the dictionaries of computer science seems quite doubtful. At the same time there are names of persons which are important in the context of computer science, but they have not been included in such dictionaries and that can be treated as their shortcoming.

Terminology and the Present