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Petitioning for Support[edit]

Does anyone want to petition Microsoft or X.Org to display U+2018 in place of U+02BB when the font does not support the character?

Microsoft could do this at the kernel-mode GDI subsystem, so TextOutW() could do this without any help from applications.

There are a number of other characters that could benefit from this as well.

-- Myria 19:49, 20 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Isn't there more to be said about the okina besides technical computer encoding issues? See, for example, H as a template for what this article could be. --Dbenbenn 06:46, 19 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Grave accent[edit]

Generally, a grave accent (`) should never be used as a left single quote. Is a grave accent acceptable in this context?

There is some precedent for it. On some old terminals from the 1970s, the grave accent character was replaced with a left single quote (usually displayed as a reversed apostrophe character). For example, TeX and LaTeX were written for such terminals, and both use a grave accent when a left single quote is intended (such as in `single quotes' or ``double quotes''). Some terminal emulation programs still display a grave accent this way, but it is uncommon. Usually a grave accent looks like grave accent, and looks nothing like a left single quote. This is why, in my opinion, the grave accent as a replacement for an ‘okina looks bad. Mordomo 00:17, 30 October 2005 (UTC)
I think the main reason it looks so bad is that it takes up so much space, especially in a monotype font. It might be tolerable if it only took as much space as a real okina. KarlM 05:26, 11 July 2006 (UTC)
Prior to the 1980s, ASCII officially defined those code points as either-or (either left single quotation mark or grave accent, and likewise either apostrophe or right single quotation mark). The character set used by SAIL at the time Donald Knuth wrote TeX, which was a superset of (the printable characters of) ASCII, used quotation marks. (It also had many other symbols not present in ISO 646 or any other commonly-used computer character set prior to Unicode.) The original standard encoding for PostScript fonts, too, followed this approach—having no need for accent marks, since accented characters were provided for separately—and this was reflected in the (putatively ISO 8859-1) bitmap versions of these fonts donated by Adobe for use in X11. This really did not become an issue until the widespread adoption of ISO 10646 forced implementors to update their fonts. It also forced users to consider the problem reflected in this article: picking the "correct" code point when multiple codes with different purposes represent visually indistinguishable glyphs. (As you can probably tell, I am not optimistic, nor do I consider the exercise particularly useful. On the other hand, I am a stickler for using the correct flavor of dash, a result of having grown up with TeX, so my opinion should probably not count for much.) 121a0012 02:55, 3 September 2006 (UTC)
It depends on the typeface. The Unicode value doesn't specify the typeface, and characters can look radically different from one typeface to the next. — QuicksilverT @ 11:48, 27 March 2012 (UTC)

Unicode template[edit]

We now have the {{unicode}} template which allows proper display of this character. The article therefore needs a thorough reworking to take this into account. --Phil | Talk 09:02, Jan 20, 2005 (UTC)

We do? I see only a square box which is unacceptable. I argued long and hard to have the 'okina accepted. I do not want to see it replaced by an empty meaningless space. Please explain what is different for the majority of users who do not see an ‘ but a box. I will move this page back to Okina unless this error can be fixed by some other means or explained - Marshman 19:07, 7 November 2005 (UTC)

Okina and Spiritus asper[edit]

Does anyone know why it is written like the spiritus asper? It seems that the spiritus lenis would have been a better choice. (BTW, I am deliting the unsourced quote there about the glottal stop – if someone can back it up, please do) — Sebastian 00:31, 2005 Mar 27 (UTC)

It's not, it's written as an upside-down spiritus asper. Or a rotated spiritus lenis, if you prefer, but in any case not the same thing. KarlM 05:26, 11 July 2006 (UTC)

What does the okina really look like?[edit]

I am confused by all the representational information in this article. Could someone draw a large okina using Illustrator or some other program and include it in the article? Then we can all see how closely various representations come to approximating the symbol. Or we'll see that there are differences in opinion as to what an okina is supposed to look like. –Shoaler (talk) 17:02, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

This (comments of Shoaler above) is the most sane and most relevant contribution that anyone has yet (as of April 14th 2006) made to the discussion of the okina symbol. By using an actual graphic representation, instead of an actual character from an actual font, the inherent limitations of font characters will be transcended. Everyone will be able to see what the symbol is "really" "supposed to" look like. And that will expose the truth that, for Hawaiian language at least, there is no universal consensus as to exactly what the symbol should look like. Initially, in the history of published Hawaiian, it was not represented at all by the missionaries who first published the language (nor by the native speakers of Hawaiian who were trained and encouraged by the missionaries to use the printing press), except in a relatively small number of words, such as to distinguish ko'u "my" from kou "your". The initial, original symbol used was the humble apostrophe, at least in the Hawaiian Bible. The first appearance of an apostrophe in Ka Baibala Hemolele is on page 1, first column (left-side column), in numbered paragraph 10:

10 Kapa iho la ke Akua i kahi maloo, he Aina; a kapa iho la oia i na wai i hui pu ia 'i, o na moana: a nana ae la ke Akua, ua maikai. [red color added]

In that particular instance, the apostrophe does not represent a phonemic glottal stop, but rather, the elision of the word-initial letter "a" in the word ai. So instead of printing "ia ai", they printed "ia 'i". Several more elisive uses occur (mostly "hana'i" in place of "hana ai") before the very first glottal-stop representation occurs on page 4, first column, in numbered paragraph 10 (Kinohi, Mokuna III):

10 I aku la oia, I lohe au i kou leo iloko o ka mahinaai nei, a makau no wau, no ka mea, ahoe [sic] o'u kapa, a pee iho la au. [red color added] [The form "ahoe" should have been "aohe". For some reason, printing errors still remain in the Hawaiian Bible.]

The very next paragraph (Kinohi, Mokuna III, 11) has the second occurrence of an apostrophe used for glottal stop in the printed form "a'u".
The apostrophe symbol used in Ka Baibala Hemolele can be compared to the general shape of the Arabic numeral "9", but much smaller of course and raised up, with the enclosed part filled in black.
Horatio Hale was credited by Elbert (1979) as being the first person to recognize the glottal stop as a phoneme (not Hale's term) in Polynesian languages. However, Hale's work on Polynesian published in 1846 uses Hawaiian examples where no symbol is used to represent glottal stops.
Alexander's grammar published in 1864 uses the apostrophe for glottal stop in some words.
The first extensive use of the single-open-quote symbol, appearing similar to a "6" (analogous to the appearance of a "9" described above), might be that of Judd, Pukui, and Stokes, in their English-Hawaiian vocabulary published in 1945. Although they used it, they did not use it consistently.
Schutz probably discusses the history and development of the "okina" symbol in his book.
Ultimately, the symbol-appearance issue is an issue of fonts. Most characters look different in different fonts. That's the main purpose of having different fonts in the first place, right? So it does not make a lot of sense to fret or argue over trying to make the symbol used have only one possible appearance. Nobody can ever unilaterally control the design of all fonts.
And who has been appointed by God to decree what appearance is "correct"? --- Nobody. UH teachers will act as if they are "the chosen ones", but in truth, they are mere mortals just like any other people. And no matter what symbol any person or group prefers to use, they cannot force their own preferences on everybody else.
THE SOLUTION. For Wikipedia webpages, the programmer-wizard types should simply implement the use of a VARIABLE. Users should be able to make a selection in their User Preferences which will act to automatically trigger whatever particular font character pleases the User as the okina, for all relevant Wikipedia pages. In other words, let each User select what works for him, then let the Wikipedia software auto-re-define the okina variable as the User's choice. That way, everybody can be happy. For Users who don't pay attention to User Preferences, there can be an okina-choice feature at the top of certain Wikipedia pages, like Hawaiian Language, which will function the same way. Hasn't someone already suggested this solution? Agent X 11:10, 15 April 2006 (UTC)
I do not think that to be a good idea. Language is communication. If everybody implements it own language veriation, then what will be left of the communication? Babel did that already. If somebody, anybody, leads and the rest follows, then that is the way. If someone else wants to lead but no one follows, then that is not the way. Unless of course a larger rest follows after all. At this moment it seems to me that UH leads the largest following and no one else is really interested in leading.
And in Tonga there is a 'god' who has decreed that the ʻokina (or rather fakauʻa) should be an inverted comma. That god is the Privy council decision on the orthography of the Tongan language of 1943. Oops, now I had the impression that the ʻokina was also officially sanctioned by the relevant Hawaiʻian authority. Or should I correct the table in the main article? --Tauʻolunga 06:25, 18 April 2006 (UTC)
It is historical fact that natural human languages change over time. That's how different languages develop from one language, causing the existence of language families. For example, most of the languages of Europe and India developed from one language, referred to as Proto Indo-European (PIE). Likewise, most of the languages of Polynesia, Micronesia, Indonesia, Phillipine Islands, and Taiwan, developed from one language, referred to as Proto Austronesian (PAN). This natural development of linguistic diversity is the result of human freedom in language use, and also the inherent physical operation of the human mouth and brain. When a language comes into written use, that tends to have a slowing effect on language change, but it does not, and cannot, stop language change altogether. In spite of the existence of the written language, the spoken language continues to change. Even the written language changes, albeit slower than the spoken language changes.
Of course, human freedom is not absolute. An authority figure, or his/her enforcers, can have an effect on language development. Word taboo in Tahitian is a good example of that. I don't know if Tahitian enforcers actually killed Tahitian violaters, or what the punishment was.
In the U.S., including Hawaii, we have an academic ideal of "standard English". But the U.S. is not a monarchy, like Tonga, and nobody is put to death for not using standard English. At worst, a violater may be unable to earn a degree from a university, such as UH.
How about Tonga? What is the punishment for committing the crime of not using an inverted comma? Is it a matter of actual Tongan law? Do you kill the offender, beat him, imprison him, take money from him, publicly shame him, or what? Whatever Tongan law is, it does not apply outside of Tongan territory.
You wrote ---

Oops, now I had the impression that the ʻokina was also officially sanctioned by the relevant Hawaiʻian authority.

Government in Hawaii is different from government in Tonga. (That's one of the reasons why so many Tongans leave Tonga in favor of immigrating to the U.S./Hawaii.) We have no Privy Council "god" that decrees what is right or wrong in language use and orthography. The legislature of the State of Hawaii makes laws for the state, but not for the nation. Laws made by the legislature are voted on by representatives of the people. In most cases, the votes are not unanimous. And even for the rare cases when they are unanimous, there are virtually always some people who disagree with the vote of their own representative. So state laws do not represent universal consensus.
Were you referring to UH as "the relevant Hawaiʻian authority"? UH has no authority to make laws, nor to determine the destiny of the Hawaiian language. (By the way, virtually nobody in Hawaii uses the spelling "Hawaiʻian". The spelling "Hawaiian" is used by virtually everybody here, including UH.) For example, the native speakers of Hawaiian of Niihau are not subject to control by UH policies. Niihau people write in Hawaiian without using okina symbols or kahako symbols. UH cannot force Niihau people to use those symbols in their own written Hawaiian. Do you favor punishing the Niihauans by law (or otherwise) because they don't write okinas?
Do you want the native speakers of Niihau to be controlled by language laws created by non-speakers of Hawaiian in the state legislature?
Do you want the native speakers of Niihau to be controlled by language policies created by the non-native speakers of Hawaiian who are the leaders of the Hawaiian Language departments of UH?
Back to the solution which I proposed --- If User A chooses to let symbol X represent okina when he views wikipedia articles, and User B chooses to let symbol Y represent okina when she views wikipedia articles, then User A's choice has no effect on User B's experience, and vice versa. Nothing is taken away from anyone else. It's a win-win solution. Agent X 15:23, 21 April 2006 (UTC)
I still do not agree to you. For example should I be free to write capitals where I should write lowercase and the opposite? lIKE THIS? Yes I am free to do so, but no one would like to read me, so I would exclude myself from communication. In order to avoid that I follow established usage. Sometimes there are people who do change something. If they have influence others follow, and the language/writing has changed. If not, then they perish. So in my view it all boils down to how influential UH is (if indeed they are the ones promoting the ʻ). I follow them because we use the same in Tonga. Or better should use, in reality the majority of the people does not even know what is going on and care even less, even though it is taught at schools. Whether people in Hawaiʻi want to follow them or not, is up to them of course. Apparently you do not. One day history will teach whether this ʻ struggle was a temporary aberration or the beginning of what then shall be considered self-evident. As for now. I do not know. Shall I write April 23 to follow USA or 23 April to follow many others? Shall I write ʻ or leave it out? I think I shall keep writing it until such a time it becomes clear that it was a "temporary aberration".
A type of preferences to let user A and B select symbol X and Y? No, I still think it too much hassle. And if you start with one, how much X's and Y's there are next? Let the ʻ hassle have its run, one party will win, the other will loose. Only when it becomes a stalemate or an editing war, then it might be reconsidered. Nevertheless I shall not stop you if you really want to put an effort in it, and a lot of people would follow you... --Tauʻolunga 23:27, 22 April 2006 (UTC)
I understand your position and your commitment to do what is "correct". However, there are situations where the meaning of "correct" can cover a given range of variations. For example, consider the handwriting of 1,000,000 different people. No two people will have exactly the same appearance of the letters of their handwriting. But as long as there is enough similarity, the differences do not ruin communication, and do not harm anything. Likewise, some people can use an apostrophe ('), some can use a backquote (`), some can use an esoteric unicode font character (ʻ), but their small variations in appearance do not ruin or otherwise prevent communication.
Your information about the situation in Tonga is interesting and valuable. You noted that the government Privy Council decreed, in 1943, that the Tongan-language symbol for the phonemic glottal stop shall be the inverted comma. You also observed that the majority of the Tongan people do not care about this letter, as of 2006, even though its use is taught in schools. Therefore, it looks like 63 years worth of Tongan law and education, in a completely sovereign Polynesian kingdom, has had virtually no effect for the majority of the people. This is valuable information. It reminds me of the Niihau Hawaiians who do not use any symbol for the glottal stop, in spite of any policies made by the government or the UH teachers. When the majority of the native speakers prefer not to use the letter, then the government should listen to the people. As you describe it, the people do not follow the leader.
Actually, I think you would like my idea about Users' choice in reading the symbol, but I think you do not understand the concept of a "variable", as used in computer programming. The writing of individual Users would be conformed to the variable, for storage in the webpage text, but the reading of individual Users is where the selectable manifestation of the variable would allow freedom of choice for all Users, in a way that does not ruin communication for anybody. I'm sorry if I can't explain it in a way that you will understand. Maybe you need some knowledge of computer programming in order to understand this point.
Try this explanation. A word is written with "Q" for the variable, like this: "HawaiQi". User David likes apostrophe for okina, so his User Preference automatically converts the word "HawaiQi" in the webpage text to display on David's monitor as "Hawai'i". User John likes backquote for okina, so John's User Preference converts "HawaiQi" to display as "Hawai`i". David does not know anything about John's preference, and John does not know anything about David's preference. There is no problem at all for anybody's communication. User Paul likes no okina at all, so Paul's User Preference setting converts "HawaiQi" to display as "Hawaii" on Paul's computer monitor in Paul's house. Paul's preference (no symbol for okina) has NO EFFECT at all on David, or John, or anybody else. Communication is not ruined for anyone.
As for my own usage of symbols, I am open to adapting to the preference of the person who I communicate with. For example, in writing a personal note in Hawaiian to an old woman, I will not use okinas or kahakos, because the old woman herself has never used them even though she is a native speaker of Hawaiian. Those symbols are only a distraction to her. But in writing something in Hawaiian for UH students, I will use the okinas and kahakos, because the students are accustomed to that, and are expected to use those symbols in writing. On the other hand, when I write in English, like for this English Wikipedia, I do not write the okinas and kahakos, unless I am citing actual Hawaiian-language forms or examples. In English writing, "Hawaii" is correct. Okina is NOT a member of the English alphabet. But in (modern) Hawaiian writing, "Hawai`i" is correct. Okina IS a member of the (modern) Hawaiian alphabet. (For the old people, "Hawaii" is correct, because okina is NOT a member of the (old) Hawaiian alphabet.) Agent X 20:59, 3 May 2006 (UTC)
Re: "HawaiQi" etc: I think that's a great idea! Let people set filters to decide whether and how to display an ʻokina. But because the letter Q is being used for other things, we should probably pick a character that's not used much for other things. I've found one at Unicode code point 699.... /blahedo (t) 03:55, 28 August 2006 (UTC)
By the way, an American poet was famous for using lowercase where uppercase was expected. He signed his name as "e. e. cummings". He did not expect anybody to follow him. He just wanted to use his own style in writing. His communication was successful, because he became a famous poet. Agent X 21:35, 3 May 2006 (UTC)
Nothing is without some merits. As I said before, if you want to do it, and you think it is worth, I shall not stop you: making { {okina} } from a template into a variable. There would be some practical problems though. For example Hawai(ʻ)ians should be given a choice between "" and "ʻ", while for Tongans it would be "'" versus "ʻ" (because although they do not always use the right shape, at least they always write something). But I guess that is not unsurmountable. --Tauʻolunga 07:40, 4 May 2006 (UTC)

Comparison of 4 different okina characters, enlarged to show details of shapes[edit]

Hey, see if you get a charge out of this code (apostrophe, backquote, others):


Agent X18:44, 18 June 2006 (UTC)

The last one is it. I can see all, I can type all. But the question is whether people using Internet explorer with Windows 95 or so can --Tauʻolunga 19:24, 18 June 2006 (UTC)
I'm using Internet Explorer with Windows XP Home. The 1st character, named apostrophe, is basically a line running North-South. The 2nd character, named backquote, is basically a line running Northwest-Southeast. The 3rd character, named ?? (no name??), is basically a black square with a curve going North from the Northwest corner and curving Northeast. The 4th character, named ?? (no name??), is an empty rectangle notably larger and lower than the other characters. The best appearance of these four is the 3rd one, because it more closely resembles the shape of an Arabic numeral "6", or an upside-down comma, or an opening single quote. The runner up is the 2nd one (backquote). Third place goes to the 1st one (apostrophe). The 4th one, looking like an empty box, is a very poor choice, and is not acceptable in terms of its optical appearance. To put it bluntly, it looks terrible. Another user called it "crappy".
If the 3rd character looks best, for the majority of users, then it should be used instead of the 4th character. Agent X 07:30, 20 June 2006 (UTC)
Note to Tauolunga ("placed above"??) --- The line break codes I wrote above are necessary in order to prevent the 4th character from being superimposed over other text. Agent X 07:42, 20 June 2006 (UTC)
I am not suprised, Internet explorer is notorious for its misbehaviours, this: ʻ being one of many. You better take another browser, there are many available, Firefox is a good choice. Using the {{okina}} template is supposed to solve this problem even for (some) Internet explorers, it should look like this: ʻ. How is it to you, box or inverted comma? Anyway if you read Template_talk:Okina, you will see that there is a long struggle whether to use the ‘ left curly quote (your number 3), wrong but everybody can see it, or the ʻ inverse comma modifier (number 4), right but needs updated software. I rest my case --Tauʻolunga 09:44, 20 June 2006 (UTC)

It might be reasonable to also add the empty box as a glyph, because of the wide phenomenon that so many Internet users (by virtue of using browsers like Internet Explorer) can't view text in a font that displays the ʻokina character, and it's been this way for years. After a long while, if people understand "Oh, that box ʻ is an ʻokina", it might actually become viewed as a glyph variant. I understand that this is speculative and possibly original research, but perhaps worth mentioning as an Internet issue, and perhaps even displayed in a graphic as well. - Gilgamesh 17:32, 20 June 2006 (UTC)

I had today unexpectedly the use of a Windows computer (XPprof) using its provided Internet explorer: boxes; using Firefox 1504, downloaded from the internet: beautiful glottals. From now on I agree with Gilgamesh, there is no excuse anymore to shy away from the real ʻ --Tauʻolunga 01:58, 21 June 2006 (UTC)

Okina in articles[edit]

So, how do we deal with putting the okina in articles? I see someone started an okina template, but it shows up on my browser as the blank square still. I would prefer it just be an apostraphe instead of the square.--Cúchullain t / c 22:05, 13 February 2006 (UTC)

Yes, something seems very wrong with the template which worked just a few days ago, but no longer works. But I cannot get to the template to edit it. - Marshman 01:53, 14 February 2006 (UTC)


The Okina character is looking like one rectangle. Eh?! That's a problem. You making the articles look crappy. --Localboy 00:20, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

Why not just make it simple and use ' This is the English wikipedia not da hawaiian wikipedia. --Localboy 00:23, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

You have a good point. but one argued in depth over a year ago. If you are more comfortable doing it that way, then go for it. Others may eventually "correct" those entries, but you should not care one way or the other. The "'" and ʻ look close on my computer, but not so on other computers. I think the article talks about proper rendering of the 'okina, which is a perfection we should strive for, just because there is a right way to do it. But I have no problem with anyone using "'" instead (caus easier brah), while I do have a problem with renderings that show just a box on most computers. - Marshman 18:07, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

Simple Okina fix[edit]

I've altered the templates {{okina}} and {{'okina}} so that the ʻokina will show up for Internet Explorer users by encoding the unicode information in a font that has the ʻokina as a symbol (Lucida Sans Unicode). I am an IE user, and I can see the ʻokina fine now. Ryūlóng 08:36, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Okina versus ʻOkina[edit]

How do we change the title of this article from Okina to ʻOkina? As I understand it, the correct spelling of ʻokina is with the ʻokina. It is not okina. Since this article is all about the glottal stop called ʻokina, I think we should try and change the title. ...novice Wikipedian, Kealakekua 09:37, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Well, this might be like driving Napoʻopoʻo road downhill (;-), but it's done in the German Wikipedia already: de:ʻOkina. ThT 07:15, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Polynesian languages in French areas[edit]

All those discussions are about ʻOkina used in the English-speaking area (mostly Hawaiian, and Maori languages and their dialects). But note that Maori dialects in New Zealand has forgotten the concept, and uses a common simplified alphabet (even without diacritics for long vowels; the glottal stop is represented by a letter h whose spelling is not always a glottal stop as this depends of the dialect.

In the French-speaking area (French Polynesia, Wallis and Futuna, and even in New Caledonia, the (9-shaped) typographic apostrophe is used since long inmany official records, despite the apostrophe is also used for denoting the elision. We have seen other shapes trying to make a clear distinction with the apostrophe, andit looks midway between the turned comma and the apostrophe; so it is effectively larger and even more legible than the two alternates.

It also differs in the order when sorting : in Tahitian, the letter is not part of the primary alphabet but distinctions are made at the third collation level (after case differences), so it behaves as if it was a diacritic.

The use of diacritics in Tahitian for long vowels is also almost inexistant (same remark in Maori) despite it was listed in Marquisan-French dictionnaries published in 1931, and the ʻeta sign may combine well with the role assigned to the macron in Hawaiian (named tarava in Marquisan, I don't know the name in Tahitian).

Can someone investigate about these glyphic differences? Should you still consider the Tahitian ʻeta the same letter as the ʻokina discussed here?

Just for your information, the official website of the Tahitian Language Academy (Fare Vāna'a, or Fare Vāna’a if using a typographical postrophe) created in 1972 is it publishes online the Tahitian to French dictionnary (and sells other versions to finance the project); it makes uses of macrons for denoting long vowels, but the normalized orthography only uses a regular quote (which may be written as a typographic apostrophe) and no distinction with the elision apostrophe.

So a good question is finally: do you need Tahitian in the discussion for ʻokina , given that even the official Tahitian Language Academy (created by law of the territorial government) does not use it? is it just for historical references (for the rare texts before 1972, and before the normalization of the current Tahitian orthography ?) so ʻeta would not even be a letter in Tahitian (possibly in Wallisian, Marquesan or other native Kanack languages of New Caledonia), just the functional name describing the use of the regular quote (or typographic 9-shaped apostrophe considered as equivalent)?

Note also: the Tahitian glotal ʻeta does not seem to occur before a long vowel (notmally noted with a tarava i.e. a macron) but only on initials (that are then implicitly long) or between two short vowels. It can then be also written as a circumflex accent on the next vowel... in orthographies that don't use the tarava ! and it can be written like this on standard French keyboards (that don't have a macron, but have a combining circumflex dead key).

The similarity of the rotated glyph for ʻeta and the fact that it can kern lightly with the vowel after it, makes it very near from the circumflex above the next letter ! if you write the tahitian name ʻeta for the glotal like this, you get êta which is exactly the same and orthography (in French) as the Greek letter eta !

That's with those documents that alternate orthographies were created without any mark for the glottal : the circumflexdiacritic was lost in time.

verdy_p 00:53, 7 August 2007 (UTC)

Should okina be dismbig'd?[edit]

In Encyclopedia Britannica online, an "okina" as a Japanese ritual play[1] or a ritualistic prelude[2]. Also, the Japanese named a sub-satellite from the Kaguya (SELENE) spacecraft "okina" (Rstar) also. --Fandyllic (talk) 12:15 PM PST 5 Dec 2007 —Preceding comment was added at 20:16, 5 December 2007 (UTC)

My opinion[edit]

Use a grave accent (`). It isn't used for anything else anyway. Loma Russet (talk) 03:00, 12 April 2008 (UTC)Loma Russet

That won't work, the grave (`) looks a lot different from the okina (ʻ). C Teng 21:48, 27 May 2008 (UTC)
Search rules treat letters differently than punctuation. So, "upper-stage" and "upper stage" are recognized as identical, and is a match for a search for "stage". Kapaʻau is recognized as two words if it uses a glyph recognized as a punctuation or pronunciation type. But ʻokina is a letter. It isn't two separate words with a noise glyph in between. -J JMesserly (talk) 19:19, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
This character is an exercise in sophistry. At most screen and print resolutions it appears as an inscrutable speck, and one can easily use an apostrophe, grave accent or acute accent in its place and no one would notice. — QuicksilverT @ 11:44, 27 March 2012 (UTC)

ʻOkina title?[edit]

Just because the Okina shows up in the title for you, Remember The Dot, doesn't mean it shows up for everyone else. For me, it still shows up as a ʻ box. If it doesn't show up as a box for you but as an Okina (ʻ), then maybe you have a better computer. The title should be moved back to Okina instead. C Teng 13:54, 8 May 2008 (UTC)

It works for me on both Windows Vista and Windows XP. Any remaining compatibility issues should dim with time. —Remember the dot (talk) 15:29, 8 May 2008 (UTC)
I do realize that it shows up as a box in the title bar, but this is a very minor problem that again should become less common in time. In the article itself it looks fine. —Remember the dot (talk) 15:39, 8 May 2008 (UTC)
It's fine in the artice (besides, we have Template:Okina), but I don't think the "ʻ" should stay in the title. It doesn't look right, on my computer, anyway. C Teng 21:47, 27 May 2008 (UTC)
The forms of the title with substitutes for the ʻokina redirect here anyway. --Thnidu (talk) 18:53, 5 December 2017 (UTC)

Lack of linguistic content[edit]

The article has almost no linguistic content and consists almost entirely of a huge, unnecessarily-detailed discussion of the typography or the `okina. Surely, it would suffice to briefly say that characters such as apostrophe, open and close inverted comma and grave accent have been pressed into service at various times instead of `okina but that these are inadequate, giving brief reasons, and `okina now has its own unicode codepoint. I read the article and still know next to nothing about the `okina, except that it's difficult to typeset. This is like reading an article on the Golden Gate Bridge and finding out nothing other than the kinds of rivets that were thought to be inadequate when the bridge was built.

Could somebody with the appropriate linguistic knowledge please add to the article an explanation of how `okina is used, how it developed and so on?

Dricherby (talk) 20:36, 25 August 2008 (UTC)

Well, it's not really a linguistic article. The sound, glottal stop, is covered in its article. The specifics of Hawaiian and other languages are covered in their articles. This is an article about a letter and its typography. --JWB (talk) 20:59, 25 August 2008 (UTC)
I removed the citation needed and original research tags added by Dricherby in a mad drive-by. It looks like the user intended to add an expansion tag, and I'm going to flag the project tag accordingly. Viriditas (talk) 14:16, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

"Unicameral"[edit] a unicameral consonant letter used within the Latin script...

What is a "unicameral letter"? Can some other letters veto each others' legislation? — ˈzɪzɨvə (talk) 01:50, 11 March 2009 (UTC)

If I recall correctly, a unicameral letter is a letter that has no separate uppercase and lowercase form (like A vs. a, B vs. b, etc.)—it is caseless (ʻ vs. ... ʻ). If a particular alphabet is made up entirely of unicameral letters, it is a unicameral alphabet (such as Arabic, Cherokee, Ethiopic, Georgian, Hebrew, etc.). Someone please correct me if I'm mistaken. - Gilgamesh (talk) 23:32, 11 March 2009 (UTC)
Ah, very interesting... I wasn't aware there was a term for that! I guess that would mean that the Polynesian alphabets are uniquely semi-bicameral. ;-) Considering the number of common Latin letters unused in these alphabets, I wonder why they didn't simply repurpose Q or something, as in Maltese. — ˈzɪzɨvə (talk) 00:17, 15 March 2009 (UTC)
Semi-bicamerality (!) is not unique to Polynesian alphabets. German uses unicameral ß in an otherwise bicameral Latin alphabet, and several Caucasian languages use unicameral Ӏ in an otherwise bicameral Cyrillic alphabet. (Apparently Unicode does have separate points for capital and lower-case Ӏ, but since they're identical in appearance it's a distinction without a difference.) Pais (talk) 15:56, 3 May 2011 (UTC)
The paločki are not identical in apperance. I've seen handwriting where the lower-case is clearly distinct. And there is both an uppercase ẞ and lowercase ß now. -- Evertype· 12:50, 13 August 2012 (UTC)

Uppercase or lowercase O?[edit]

If the ʻokina is the first letter of the word ʻokina, then should the O always be lowercase (unless ʻOKINA is all caps)? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:57, 10 August 2012 (UTC)

No, at the beginning of a sentence it would be ʻOkina, -- Evertype· 09:53, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
While the other 12 letters of the Hawaiian alphabet have upper and lower case, the ʻokina does not. If it is the first letter, case is deferred to the vowel immediately after it. - Gilgamesh (talk) 19:00, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
Same in Tonga. Strictly ridiculous of course, but that is the way it is. --Tauʻolunga (talk) 05:08, 13 August 2012 (UTC)