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Is there an art to naming projects?

scrabill profile image Shannon Crabill ・1 min read

My first bootcamp project is due in a few weeks which has me thinking about what I should name my project.

How do you decide on a name for a project?

Previously, I've used whatever comes to mind or makes it clear that the project belongs to a specific lesson. I also feel like once you name something and put it on Github, you are stuck with it forever (or risk a dead URL).

Discussion (5)

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Scott Simontis

I pick something that is either a pop culture reference no one will understand or something really generic. I find issues like these are wonderful opportunities for me personally to procrastinate, so I have to move past them as soon as possible or else I spiral down the rabbit hole...

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Shannon Crabill Author

I'm a fan of a pop culture reference. My go-to is naming something what it is, which the tech trend/trope of removing all the vowels :)

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Michiel Hendriks • Edited

There are only two hard things in Computer Science: cache invalidation and naming things. -- Phil Karlton

(Often extended with the joke: "and off-by-one errors")

There is no art. Naming things is just plain difficult. Be it names for types, methods/functions, or variables. Names for projects are probably the most difficult. That's why most projects have terrible names. Quite often they start with a placeholder name, with the intent to make up a better in the near future. But that rarely happens.

One way to approach it is to find a relatable name in the public domain, and change it a bit. For example.

Step 1: pick a character from the Greek mythology which did/said something which relates to your project
Step 2: find out some other project already uses
Step 3: back to step one
Step 4: give up and use a random name generator

Or,

Step 1: make a single sentence description of what your project does
Step 2: take the first letters of each word and make a name out of it
Step 3: unable to make a name from it, back to step one
Step 4: give up and use a random name generator

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Damir Franusic

I used to use animal names like mink so my last project was named pMINK as in Project Mink. There were also hedgehog, giraffe, gerbil, etc.

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Oliver

I try to come up with something punny, clever, or whimsical that makes me smile. I am working on a mental health application (mood tracking with data viz, coping tools etc) that I'm calling Pocket Therabuddy because its the therapy buddy that fits in your pocket