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What's in a Project Name?


I worked at a startup company in Anacortes, Washington, and since it was located on Fidalgo Island, one of the San Juan Islands, we decided to use that island group as our set of internal project names. The first project was called Orcas and the second Lopez. The marketing folks liked the names so well they decided to use them for actual public product names. They changed Lopez to Cypress, however, as it was a bit catchier.

Alas, the company was sold, but the two initial product names live on: http://www.accu-med.com/main/Products.asp.


Native American tribes; Kilchis, Tillamook, Yakima, Umatilla, Cayuse, Siuslaw, Makah, Quinault, Coquile, Ochoco

National Forests, Battlefields and Rivers


At the same company, we initially named our servers after Disney characters: Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Donald, etc. As soon as we hired a real network administrator, he chose to abandon these cool names in favor of boring names like mailserver1, fileserver1, etc.


Slang for sexually transmitted diseases:

“Almost finished with Project Crabs”
“I’m working on the Clap”


Victoria Secret Models

“Adriana, Gisele, Miranda, Alessandra, Heidi, etc…”


The elements from the periodic table: hydrogen, helium, lithium, beryllium, etc (http://www.webelements.com/). You even have abbreviations already: h, he, li, be.


Not computer related, but I used to work for a games company where there was one particular designer was upset that his internal code-name for a previous project ended up as the public name. He had always hated the name, wasn’t responsible for its initial creation, and only used it under duress and the promise that it wouldn’t make the final public release.

To avoid it happening again, he made sure his next project was code-named “Pig Wank”, and that’s how he always referred to it in printed material, meetings, etc.


Aw, c’mon, nobody’s going to take a stab at identifying the project names I mentioned at the front of the post?

Michelangelo: Comic book character. Named after the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michelangelo_(TMNT)

Nash: Brand of car. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nash_Motors

Whiskeytown: National park. http://www.nps.gov/whis/

Gobstopper: Candy. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gobstopper


We used also name of places of the childhood of the developers in the team.
I also wrote a similar post back in February:


In my company, our server’s names come from Kill Bill characters. At first we used only women names, but after Yubari and Elle we ran out of names and had to move on to male characters. Curiously, we don’t have a Bill server yet :slight_smile:


At work we’re using characters from great literary fiction for our iterations, e.g., Athos, Beowulf, etc.

I’ve always been a fan of naming my machines after bad action film and TV stars. Some of my favorites include CHUCKNORRIS, CHRISLAMBERT, STEVENSEAGAL, LUCYLAWLESS. You get the drift.


We choose the boring - ‘what it does’ way :frowning:
Though I think I’ll start to name my projects after 80’s pop groups - ‘SpandauBallet’, ‘IggyPop’ etc :slight_smile:


How are GUIDs or unicode characters good project name ? Nobody will be able to memorize GUIDs, and even if they did, nobody would easily recognize a name as they start their 5-minute-monologue just to pronounce the name, and nobody could pronounce all the unicode characters (nor TYPE) at all. Horrible, horrible ideas.


My servers are all named after cars. Delorean, Lotus, AlfaRomeo, etc.

A company I interviewed at had 3 of their servers named Marshall, Will, and Holly. That was awesome.


For our Servers we once used Snowflake’s 7 dwarfs names.

Right now, for our project, I think we’ll be using Chocolate blends or natural disasters… :stuck_out_tongue:


previos firm used names of islands.and the 80’s band names(Camper Van B). US submarines are named after: Sturgeon class= fish Los Angeles class=cities OHIO class…


Italian cellphone operator Omnitel (then Vodafone) sometimes used game names: Risiko (i.e. Risk), Monopoli (i.e. Monopoly), Pokemon…


As a humorous aside, one place where this was prominently done was in the case of nuclear testing. The first nuclear test was given a secretive code name (Trinity) by the enigmatic Oppenheimer; the next test series (run by the less enigmatic military) simply used military A-B-C codenames (Able, Baker, and Charlie, though the latter was not fired). After going through a number of these more “boring” military sets, and as testing became more plentiful they started giving them more creative names. The names weren’t supposed to have any correlation to the weapons being tested, but in some cases they were mnemonics—King was K for Kiloton, Mike was M for Megaton, both of which being special “superbombs” of Operation Castle; some were named after the code-names of their component parts, e.g. shot Harry tested the “Hamlet” device, shot Climax tested the “Cobra” device, etc. Anyway, later test series took their inspiration Native American tribes (either ironic or in bad taste, given the history of Native American interactions with government uranium mining, testing, development, etc.), scientists, wildflowers, insects, mountains, rivers, gods, etc.


We just use the names of local pubs, so we have systems called ‘Jackson’ and ‘George’ (Sydneysiders will note our downmarket tastes!).


CynicalTyler - you are my hero.