French is my native language and I just realized that the # in C# is the same character as for the diese music character that raises a note by a half tone.

Also, As I made my music elementary class in french, I did not realized that the C was also a musical note, as in french we use do.

With a little searching, I noticed that this link was made on purpose.

So, here is my question: Is that link obvious for English native speaker? Does that link automatically activate some bell as the for the BASIC acronym and a fundamental piece of knowledge, or the SOAP acronym and the cleaning compound.

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    It was apparent to me (as a non-native but fluent English speaker), but didn't evoke a particular reaction beyond sometimes calling it Db as a joke. – Adam Lear Apr 28 '11 at 14:13
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    It's also a riff on C++ where you could see the # as two overlapping + signs. – ChrisF Apr 28 '11 at 14:17
  • @Anna Db? I don't get it. – DavRob60 Apr 28 '11 at 14:23
  • I'm going to say it's more obvious to people with a music background, and native English speakers. I only learned the those music terms when I started taking music classes, which are optional in school where I'm from anyway. – Tyanna Apr 28 '11 at 14:23
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    @DavRob60 ~ D flat....C sharp and D flat are the same note in music terms. – Tyanna Apr 28 '11 at 14:24

I suppose it was obvious even for non-native English speakers or even English non-speakers, but no longer than for the first 10 minutes from the moment of learning of the existence of the language C#.

After that nobody gave it a second thought.

The naming choice is however a bad one. '#' is a special character and is therefore ignored by search engines. Whenever you look for C#-related information, input help erases the '#' character so if you don't notice and click search you get the results for C. And even if you put the character back you will still get mixed results for the C/C++ content.

  • Even the wiki link the OP provided says that it's unable to display the # in the title due to technical restrictions :D – John Shaft Apr 28 '11 at 14:35
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    Or you could just search for ".net" stuff.... Why does Microsoft do this? – David Thornley Apr 28 '11 at 16:30
  • @DavidThornley And then google decided to one-up Microsoft by calling their language "go". – CodesInChaos Oct 22 '12 at 15:40

Yes. The name C# is almost certainly meant to invoke the association with music (and perhaps elegance/harmony) to a native English speaker.

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C_Sharp_%28programming_language%29#Name


The Wikipedia article on Csharp agrees with you. I know neither French nor music notation. One interpretation I did make when I first saw the name was that the # charachter could be thougth of as four intercroconnected cross signs. Think C++++ or


just like C++ was an increment of C, C# was an increment of C++

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    That's curious, given that most of what C# does to C++ is throw things away. :) – Billy ONeal Jul 29 '11 at 21:17
  • Yep, hardcore C++ programmers miss much of what C# has thrown away( I really miss my "friend"). Newbie C++ devs who quickly shift to C# on the other hand really like that the scope resolution operator and pointer notation have all been done away with. – DPD Aug 7 '11 at 11:19
  • C# inherits C's pointer notation, just as C++ does. I don't understand your point there. – Billy ONeal Aug 7 '11 at 23:02

Or hash. Or two pluses (not four), superimposed sloppily. Especially given the slant of the vertical strokes when the glyph is rendered.

But, yeah, it's both obvious and kind of unimportant to an English speaker. Just Microsoft being cute. Again.

BASIC has meaning (a basic computer for basic learning, without unnecessary complexity).

SOAP is just a random acronym, as is AJAX. Nothing gets cleaner, nor does anybody expect it to.

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