I read a great article in Tech Review today about using technology to name your child. Actually, a better description would be how to utilize technology to avoid giving your child a ghastly name. I've long said that children of Asian immigrants can often be easily determined by their names--they're the ones with names like Eugenia, Esther, Isabel, and Rosalind, names that were popular decades ago but are ones that no self-respecting native English-speaking parent would name their child now.
A particular gem from David Brittan:
The knowledge that Michael means �who is like God� might be a source of inner satisfaction for Michael, but it will always be his little secret. The fact is, our society doesn�t much care about derivation�otherwise people named Bertha (�bright�) and Kermit (�church�), beautiful as their souls may be, would not be consigned to what must surely be a living hell.
A Google Image seach on Bertram (one name my parents were considering naming my brother Galen) yielded this horrendous sight. Thank goodness I picked Galen, as this Galen is pretty easy on the eyes. I'm glad I had enough sense as a three-year-old to recognize that aural complement of Berta and Bertram alone was too much. A search on my name yielded much as I suspected: overweight Eastern European women of a certain age, dogs, and men.
As much as I dislike my name, it is me, for better for worse. At least it is unusual, so I've never had problems picking out an email address or username. And it's not like I could pick a name in Chinese. Now those all sound alike to me.