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Well, okay, not "gigabyte" but "gigahertz" -- I have actually heard both
hard and soft "g" from scientists and engineers working in magnetic fusion.
For what it's worth, the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM)
Standard for Metric Practice, E 380-79, contains a table of recommended
pronunciations for prefixes and selected units, and it says "jig' a (i as in
jig, a as in about)." Of course, it also says that "pascal" rhymes with
"rascal" -- news to my French-speaking friends.
And this does have something to do with technical communication, and with
professional respect -- I still remember being laughed at by one of the
scientists and engineers mentioned above for stumbling over "Debye" (I was
reading it as Deb-ye). Not to mention saying "Gesundheit" when I first heard
"Kurchatov" pronounced correctly (accent on the second syllable).
mnj -at- ornl -dot- gov
DISCLAIMER: Speaking as a private citizen (in the probably misguided belief
that such a class still exists).