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Techie terms in Chinese (Cantonese) - Need help to find more

As an Overseas/Irish Born Chinese (IBC) and been in the tech industry and area for majority of my life, I'm not that versed in Chinese, specifically Cantonese technology terms/phrases/slang.

Note: The pronunciations below are all jyutping, and the Chinese characters are in Traditional Chinese.

The lists below are not in any particular order.

I've collated a few (some I knew already) from when I tweeted out about it:-
  • ไธŠ็ถฒ (soeng5 mong5) - going online / visiting sites
  • ่ปŸไปถ (jyun5 gin6*2) - software
  • ็กฌไปถ (ngaang6 gin6/6*2) - hardware
  • ็ถฒ้  (mong5 jip6) - webpage
Ones I've been looking for in the past:-
  • ็ถฒๅ€ (mong5 zi2) - web address
  • ็€่ฆฝ่ปŸไปถ (lau4 laam5 jyun5 gin6*2) - web browser
  • ่ฌ็ถญ็ถฒ (maan6 wai4 mong5) - WWW
  • ่จญ่จˆ็จ‹ๅผ (cit3 gai3 cing4 sik1) - programming
  • ็จ‹ๅบ่จญ่จˆ (cing4 zeoi6 cit3 gai3) - programming
I was delighted to find the following:-
  • ๆ‰“ๅก (daa2 kaat1) - grammin'
  • ๆ’ญๅฎข (bo3 haak3) - podcast
  • ็ถฒ้ ่จญ่จˆ (mong5 jip6 cit3 gai3) - web design
  • ็ถฒ้ ่จญ่จˆๅธซ (mong5 jip6 cit3 gai3 si1) - web designer
  • ็ถฒ็ตกๆ—ฅ่ชŒ (mong5 lok3 jat6 zi3) - blog
  • ๆ‡‰็”จ็จ‹ๅผไป‹้ข (jing3 jung6 cing4 sik1 gaai3 min6) - application programming
  • ่ง’ๆœฌ (gok3 bun2) - script
  • ่…ณๆœฌ่ชž่จ€ (goek3 bun2 jyu5 jin4) - scripting language
  • ไธŠ่ผ‰ (soeng6 zoi3) - to upload (computer)
  • ไธŠๅ‚ณ (soeng5 cyun4) - to upload
  • ไธ‹่ผ‰ (haa6 zoi3) - download
  • ๆธฌ่ฉฆ (cak1 si3) - trial, test, beta (software)
  • ่ปŸไปถ้–‹็™ผ (jyun5 gin6*2 hoi1 faat3) - software Development
  • ้›ป่…ฆๆฅญ่€… (din6 nou5 jip6 ze2) - software Developer
  • ่ปŸไปถ้–‹็™ผไบบๅ“ก (jyun5 gin6*2 hoi1 faat3 jan4 jyun4) - software Developer
  • ๆ•ธๆ“šๅบซ่ปŸไปถ (sou3 geoi3 fu3 jyun5 gin6*2) - database software
  • ๆœฌๅœŸๅŒ–่ปŸไปถ (bun2 tou2 faa3 jyun5 gin6*2) - localisation
  • ๅฎขๆˆถ้—œไฟ‚็ฎก็†่ปŸ้ซ” (haak3 wu6 gwaan1 hai6 gun2 lei5 jyun5 tai2) - CRM
  • ่ปŸไปถๅนณๅฐ (jyun5 gin6*2 ping4 toi4) - software Platform
  • ่ปŸไปถไฝฟ็”จ่จฑๅฏ่ญ‰ (jyun5 gin6*2 si2 jung6 heoi2 ho2 zing3) - software Licence
  • ้–‹ๆบ (hoi1 jyun4) - opensource (software)
  • ้–‹ๆบ่ปŸไปถ (hoi1 jyun4 jyun5 gin6*2) - OSS
  • ่‡ช็”ฑ่ปŸไปถๅŸบ้‡‘ๆœƒ (zi6 jau4 jyun5 gin6*2 gei1 gam1 wui6*2) - Free Software Foundation (FSF)
  • ่จ˜ๆ†ถ (gei3 jik1) - memory (RAM)
  • ๅธณๆˆถ (zoeng3 wu6) - account
  • ็•ถๆฉŸ (dong1 gei1) - computer crash
  • ๆญปๆฉŸ (sei2 gei1) - computer crash
  • ้ปž่งธๆฟ (dim2 zuk1 baan2) - touchpad
  • ็”จๅฎถ้ซ”้ฉ— (jung6 gaa1 tai2 jim6) - user experience
  • ็ช’ๆฉŸ (zat6 gei1) - lag
  • ๆˆชๅœ– (zit6 tou4) - screenshot
  • ๅœ–ๅƒ็”จๆˆถไป‹้ข (tou4 zoeng6 jung6 wu6 gaai3 min6*2) - GUI
  • ็”จๆˆถๆ•ธๆ“š (jung6 wu6 sou3 geoi3) - user data
  • ็”จๆˆถ้ฉ—ๆ”ถๆธฌ่ฉฆ (jung6 wu6 jim6 sau1 cak1 si3) - user acceptance testing (UAT)
  • ๅ›žๆญธๆธฌ่ฉฆ (wui4 gwai1 cak1 si3) - regression testing
  • ็Ÿญ่จŠ (dyun2 seon3) - SMS text message
  • ๅŠŸ่ƒฝๆธฌ่ฉฆ (gung1 nang4 cak1 si3) - functional testing
  • ็ถฒ็ตก่ชฟๆŸฅ (mong5 lok3 diu6 caa4) - web search
  • ๅนณ้ข่จญ่จˆ (ping4 min6*2 cit3 gai3) - raphic design
  • ๅนณ้ข่จญ่จˆๅธซ (ping4 min6*2 cit3 gai3 si1) - graphic designer
  • ๅœ–ๅƒไบ’ๆ›ๆ ผๅผ (tou4 zoeng6 wu6 wun6 gaak3 sik1) - GIF
  • ็„ก็ทš็ถฒ็ตก (mou4 sin3 mong5 lok3) - wifi
  • ็ถฒๅ‹ (mong5 jau5) - online friend
  • ็ถฒไธŠ็˜‹ๅ‚ณ (mong5 soeng6 fung1 cyun4) - going viral online
  • ็„ก็ทšไธŠ็ถฒ (mou4 sin3 soeng5 mong5) - wireless going onto internet
  • ็ถฒ็ตกๆœๅ‹™ๅ…ฌๅธ (mong5 lok3 fuk6 mou6 gung1 si1) - ISP
  • ๅˆ†ไฝˆๅผๆ‹’็ต•ๆœๅ‹™ (fan1 bou3 sik1 keoi5 zyut6 fuk6 mou6) - DDOS
  • ้ซ˜ๆŠ€่ก“ (gou1 gei6 seot6) - hi-tech
  • ้ซ˜็ง‘ๆŠ€ (gou1 fo1 gei6) - hi-tech
  • ๆŠ€่ก“ๅ“ก (gei6 seot6 jyun4) - techie

If you know of other techie terms or slang, let me know. And please provide the pronunciations if you can. Thanks in advance. ๐Ÿ˜Š

Great to have translations for:-
  • Tweet
  • Facebooking
  • Source control
  • repo
  • TDD
  • BDD
  • Virtual environment
  • sandbox (programming)
  • Virtual reality
  • Augmented reality
  • Touchscreen
  • QR code
  • scan (a code)
  • retina display
  • text editor (coding)
  • data scientist
  • data engineer
  • visualisation/visualization (data)
  • startup
  • ecosystem
  • indie developers (games)
  • remote working

Top comments (11)

alxtsg profile image
Alex Tsang

From the point of view of a Hongkonger:

  • Facebooking - "ไธŠFacebook" (visit Facebook) or "็‡Facebook" (reading the posts on Facebook).
  • Tweet - I think Hongkongers simply use the word "tweet" and I don't think it has commonly used Cantonese translation.
  • Virtual reality - If I have to mention this technology to others, I would use the term "VR". If I must use Cantonese, "่™›ๆ“ฌๅฏฆๆ™ฏ".
  • Augmented reality - Similar to VR, I would simply use the term "AR". I don't have experience of explaining this technology to others in Cantonese.
  • QR code - No Cantonese translation in daily life, simply use the term "QR code" as-is.
  • scan (a code) - "Scanไธ‹ๅ€‹Code" (give the code a scan).
  • startup - "ๅˆๅ‰ตไผๆฅญ", or usually "ๅˆๅ‰ต".
  • indie developers (games) - I would use the term "indie" to describe the team. For example, I woud say "ๆ•ดๅ‘ข้šปGameๅ˜…ไฟ‚Indie" (who made this game are indie (developers)).

For other words in your list, those are either too technical that no one I know would say them in Cantonese, or the Cantonese translation is not commonly used.

Also, while both "็•ถๆฉŸ" and "ๆญปๆฉŸ" mean computer crash, Hongkongers tend to say that as "HangๆฉŸ" (the machine is hanging there and doing nothing). To mention a screenshot, I woud say "Capๅœ–" ("Cap" for capture). For example, "Capๅน…ๅœ–็•€ๆˆ‘็‡ไธ‹" (capture the screen for me to check).

By the way, I suggest and if you would like to type in Cantonese. I use the former one daily as I don't know Cangjie or Quick. The former one doesn't use the Jyutping standard but the romanisation is more familiar to Hongkongers.

Hope this helps.

whykay profile image
whykay ๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿˆ๐Ÿณ๏ธโ€๐ŸŒˆ (she/her)

Thanks! And thank you for the useful references too!
I don't know how to type in Chinese (very basic kindergarden reading & writing๐Ÿ˜†), I look up the words, then themselves individually or as a phrase via To hear what it sounds like, I use SayJack ( Google is not that great, they had someone internally doing Cantonese translations years ago, but was not officially released. I should write a post on my process, it takes me a few steps if I don't know the words themselves or what it sounds like. I can speak it and understand it no problem. But it's worth the trouble because I get to learn new words and reinforce my understanding of Traditional Chinese and Cantonese. ๐Ÿ˜Š

ytjchan profile image

Indie is ็จ็ซ‹่ฃฝไฝœ, and developer is ้–‹็™ผ่€…. I would rather call indie developers as ็จ็ซ‹่ฃฝไฝœไบบ.

whykay profile image
whykay ๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿˆ๐Ÿณ๏ธโ€๐ŸŒˆ (she/her)

Anyone help me? I don't know where to tag this article so I get more help finding Chinese (Cantonese) techie terminology. Already emailed the mods to see if they can advise. #TIA

michaeltharrington profile image
Michael Tharrington

Hey there,

Sorry about this!

I think this was most likely a mistake. I'll add this tag back to your post now and look into things... probably just a moment where someone didn't read thoroughly enough into the article. ๐Ÿ™‚

I'll also email ya back โ€” apologies for the delayed response! ๐Ÿ™ƒ

whykay profile image
whykay ๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿˆ๐Ÿณ๏ธโ€๐ŸŒˆ (she/her)

No worries at all, thank you. I just had to amend the title and I seem to have gotten help from folks. This community roxx! Keep up with the good work. Being a mod is no easy job. ๐Ÿคœ๐Ÿค›

hangindev profile image
Jason Leung ๐Ÿง—โ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿ’ป • Edited

Hi whykay! I come from Hong Kong and Cantonese is my mother tongue. Glad you are picking up the language and I think I can help with some of them:

้ขๆ›ธ (min6 syu1) - Facebook
่™›ๆ“ฌๅฏฆๅขƒ (heoi1 ji4 sat6 ging2) - Virtual reality
ๆ“ดๅผตๅฏฆๅขƒ (kwong3 zoeng1 sat6 ging2) - Augmented reality
่ผ•่งธๅผ็†’ๅน• (hing1 zuk1 sik1 jing4 mok6) - Touchscreen
่ฆ–่ฆบๅŒ– (si6 gaau3 faa3) - visualisation
ๆ•ธๆ“š่ฆ–่ฆบๅŒ– (sou3 geoi3 si6 gaau3 faa3)- data visualization
้™่ทๅทฅไฝœ (jiu4 keoi5 gung1 zok3) - remote working
ๅ‰ตๆฅญ (cong1 cong3) - startup
ๆŽƒๆ (sou3 miu4) - scan

Some of them I really don't know because we would just mix English terms in our daily conversation. In fact, I also struggle when I am writing my blog in Chinese that if I should use English terms that many can read or use translated terms that people may find confusing.

You can visit this site to search for the character and listen to its pronunciation. DM me via twitter if you need further help! Good luck!

whykay profile image
whykay ๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿˆ๐Ÿณ๏ธโ€๐ŸŒˆ (she/her)

Amazing! Thank you so much! I speak Cantonese at when I visit family, but it's so hard to communicate what I do day-to-day and what excites me to my mom and other relatives who are not in tech industry. My Cantonese conversationally is grand, I haven't been laughed at in Hong Kong when I am out and about, but certainly terms for more topical conversations on tech is hard for me. So thank you for your help. I understand we all mingle English with our Cantonese conversations.

daoleno profile image

Tweet - ๆŽจ็‰น
Facebook - ่„ธไนฆ
Source control - ๆบไปฃ็ ็ฎก็†
repo - ไป“ๅบ“
TDD - ๆต‹่ฏ•้ฉฑๅŠจๅผ€ๅ‘
BDD - ่กŒไธบ้ฉฑๅŠจๅผ€ๅ‘
Virtual environment - ่™šๆ‹Ÿ็Žฏๅขƒ
sandbox (programming) - ๆฒ™็›’
Virtual reality - ่™šๆ‹Ÿ็Žฐๅฎž
Augmented reality - ๅขžๅผบ็Žฐๅฎž
Touchscreen - ่งฆๆ‘ธๅฑ
QR code - ไบŒ็ปด็ 
scan (a code) - ๆ‰ซๆ
retina display - ่ง†็ฝ‘่†œๆ˜พ็คบๅฑ
text editor (coding) - ๆ–‡ๆœฌ็ผ–่พ‘ๅ™จ
data scientist - ๆ•ฐๆฎ็ง‘ๅญฆๅฎถ
data engineer - ๆ•ฐๆฎๅทฅ็จ‹ๅธˆ
visualisation/visualization (data) - ่™šๆ‹ŸๅŒ–
startup - ๅฏๅŠจ/ๅˆ›ไธšๅ…ฌๅธ
ecosystem - ็”Ÿๆ€็ณป็ปŸ
indie developers (games) - ็‹ฌ็ซ‹ๅผ€ๅ‘่€…
remote working - ่ฟœ็จ‹ๅทฅไฝœ

whykay profile image
whykay ๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿˆ๐Ÿณ๏ธโ€๐ŸŒˆ (she/her)

Thank you so much. I'll have to get the pronunciations for them all as I am not great at reading and writing being born overseas and a self-learning the past few decades. I didn't go to Chinese school (didn't have any where I grew up). This is really helpful, so thank you! I will probably write another post... if there's enough, maybe a series. ๐Ÿค”

danielltw profile image
Daniel Leong ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฌ

Awesome list you have here.

Definitely great to have this on hand in a case you need it.