Browse Definitions:

Quiz: How do you pronounce IT in Geek?

Have you ever been embarrassed because you've mispronounced a tech term? This quiz tests your knowledge of the American pronunciation for some commonly mispronounced words. Write down your answers and then scroll to the end to see how well you did. Good luck!

1. While data has at least two alternate meanings, in computer science it's information that has been translated into a form that is more convenient to move or process. How do you pronounce data correctly?
a. "DAH-tuh"
b. "DAY-tuh"

2. If you work with databases, you're sure to come across SQL. But how do you pronounce it?
a. like "sequel" as "SEE-Kwill"
b. "ess cue-ell"
c. A & B

3. Schema derives from a Greek word for "form" or "figure." If you work with relational or object-oriented databases or programming languages, you may be familar with schema as the organization or structure for a database. How do you pronounce it?
a. "SHE-mah"
b. "SKEE-mah"

4. Debian is a popular and freely-available computer operating system that uses the Linux kernel and other program components obtained from the GNU project. How do you pronounce it?
a. "deb-ee-an"
b. "dub-eye-an"

5. The word "cache" comes from the French, though the meaning is quite the same in either language: to store something where it can be easily retrieved for future use. It's also a noun, referring to that store itself. How is "cache" pronounced in common English usage?
a. "catch"
b. "cash"

6. VoIP use has proceeded rapidly over the past few years. Services like Skype and Vonage have attracted millions of users. Cisco products are increasingly being implemented in call centers. How should you be pronouncing it?
a. "voyp"
b. as its acronym, like "vee - oh - eye - pee"
c. A & B

7. If you've used a wide area network ( WAN ), you've probably encountered the sysop , often a tech-savvy employee who receives a small stipend for trouble-shooting computer-related problems. How do you pronounce sysop?
a. "SIZZ-ope"
b. "SISS-op"

8. Linux was named by Linus Torvalds , who developed the kernel for the operating system at the University of Helsinki in Finland. Linux is everywhere now; adopted by government of Brazil and showing up in " skinny " versions in smartphones and other devices, notably the " $100 laptop ." So how do you pronounce the name of the OS correctly?
a. "LIHN-nix"
b. "LIE-nooks"
c. "LEE-nooks"

9. Acronyms are everywhere in information technology - or should we say "IT?" An acronym is an abbreviation of several words in such a way that the abbreviation itself forms a word. Techies love them. BASIC, SIP, HTML, ASP, VoIP, ISP, SaaS, SOA, LILO; the list is goes on and on. We try to help you make sense of them in our daily IT Alphabet Soup trivia questions, but have you stopped to learn how to pronounce acronym itself?
a. "ah-KROH-nihm"
b. "AK-ruh-nihm"

10. In information technology, canonicalization (sometimes spelled canonicalisation) is the process of making something canonical -- that is, in conformance with some specification. To canonicalize (as well as the slightly less tortured variant to canonify ) is to ensure that data conforms to canonical rules, and is in an approved format. Canonicalization is also a bit of a tongue twister - how do you pronounce it?
a. "ka-NOH-nihk-uhl-LIE-ZAY-shun"
b. "KA-nahn-nihk-uhl-ih-ZAY-shun"


Check your answers

1.) The correct answer is b. Data is pronounced as "DAY-tuh."

2.) <a href="">According to expert Rudy Limeback</a>, the correct answer is b, "ess cue ell." Rudy says, however, that "SQL is sometimes pronounced "sequel," but mostly by people who have experience only with Microsoft's database system SQL Server." As SQL server is one of the most common database systems on the planet, "SEE-kwul" is also accepted. The correct answer is c, both.

3.) The correct answer is b, "SKEE-mah."

4.) The correct answer is a, "deb-ee-an."

5.) The correct answer is b. In common English usage, cache is pronounced as "cash." In fashion circles, you might hear "Kah-SHAY," as in the French word for something of special cultural significance at a specific time, but for techies, you're clearing the browser's "cash."

6.) The correct answer is c, A & B. VoIP can be pronounced as "voyp," which is how Vonage customer services reps routinely handle it, or spelled out like "vee oh eye pee."

7.) The correct answer is b, "SISS-op."

8.) The correct answer is a, "LIHN-nix" <a href="">Here's</a> Linux Torvalds himself actually pronouncing Linux. We're inclined to agree with him on this one.

9.) The correct answer is b, "AK-ruh-nihm."

10.) The correct answer is b, "KA-nahn-nihk-uhl-ih-ZAY-shun."

How'd you do? Let us know!

This was last updated in November 2010

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.


File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:


  • risk map (risk heat map)

    A risk map, also known as a risk heat map, is a data visualization tool for communicating specific risks an organization faces.

  • internal audit (IA)

    An internal audit (IA) is an organizational initiative to monitor and analyze its own business operations in order to determine ...

  • pure risk (absolute risk)

    Pure risk, also called absolute risk, is a category of threat that is beyond human control and has only one possible outcome if ...


  • federated identity management (FIM)

    Federated identity management (FIM) is an arrangement that can be made among multiple enterprises to let subscribers use the same...

  • cross-site scripting (XSS)

    Cross-site scripting (XSS) is a type of injection security attack in which an attacker injects data, such as a malicious script, ...

  • firewall

    In computing, a firewall is software or firmware that enforces a set of rules about what data packets will be allowed to enter or...



  • business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR)

    Business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) are closely related practices that describe an organization's preparation for ...

  • business continuity plan (BCP)

    A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that consists of the critical information an organization needs to continue ...

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...


  • volume manager

    A volume manager is software within an operating system (OS) that controls capacity allocation for storage arrays.

  • external storage device

    An external storage device, also referred to as auxiliary storage and secondary storage, is a device that contains all the ...

  • NetApp SolidFire

    NetApp SolidFire is a business division of NetApp Inc. that specializes in all-flash storage systems.


  • hybrid hard disk drive (HDD)

    A hybrid hard disk drive is an electromechanical spinning hard disk that contains some amount of NAND Flash memory.