Development Resources/HOWTO/Project Naming Policy

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Project Naming Policy

Naming and branding are challenging issues. The Eclipse brand is important (see [1]). To help provide a consistent brand for Eclipse, projects are instructed follow these project naming guidelines. The best names are descriptive but at the same time memorable.

The policy for project names is:

  • GDescriptive Name. Projects are strong encouraged to use a descriptive name - a name that is useful when placed into a box on an Eclipse architecture diagram. For example "<a href="/gmf">Graphical Modeling Framework</a>", "Trust Framework" or "Component Assembly Tools". We want to avoid the need for a separate web page to explain which names correspond to which technology (such as [2]).
    • RDescriptive names do not include the words "Eclipse" or "Project". The project name should work with or without the prefix and/or suffix. For example, "Graphical Modeling Framework", "Eclipse Graphical Modeling Framework", "Graphical Modeling Framework Project", and "Eclipse Graphical Modeling Framework Project" are equally understandable.
    • RDescriptive names may optionally include the words "Framework" or "Tools" if the project has more of an emphasis on extensible frameworks, or more on exemplary tools. Eclipse projects always provide both but may be tailored more toward one or the other. When choosing to use these words, the team should consider that "Framework" and "Tools" mean different things to different people and may even be becoming overused. 
    • GTop-level projects may optionally include the word "Platform" instead of "Framework". Or not. (But sub-projects should not be Platforms.
  • RNicknames. If a team strongly prefers to use a nickname style project name, instead of a purely descriptive project name, there should also be a longer "more official, but less often used" (MOLU) combination nickname-descriptive project name. For example, the "Higgins" project has a MOLU name of "The Higgins Trust Framework".
  • GAcronym. Most descriptive names are sufficiently long that it can be convenient to abbreviate them in some way. For example, the Eclipse Communication Framework shortens to ECF.
  • RNot a Product Name. To avoid confusion between Eclipse projects and commercial products, Eclipse projects may not be named after commercial products and vice versa. (As a defensive measure, the Foundation holds the trademark to the Project names on behalf of the Projects - this prevents companies from misusing or misrepresenting their products as being the Projects.)

Using the Project Name

G Every public use of the project name - in a web page, a presentation, a press release, an article, etc. - should follow these guidelines:

  • The first use of the Project Name uses the entire Descriptive Name and may include the optional Nickname. For example, "The Eclipse Component Assembly Project (Buckminister)". Subsequent references to the project may use the Nickname, e.g., "Buckminister".
  • If the project is in the Proposal Phase, or is a Technology Project, that fact must be mentioned early in the document. For example, "The proposed Eclipse Phoenix project ..." or "The Buckminister project, a Technology project at Eclipse, is releasing version 0.2 of their framework for early alpha feedback from the community."

Infrastructure uses of the Project Name

Newsgroup.

The project newsgroup name will be eclipse.[toplevel].[shortname]. The short name can be an abbreviation of the descriptive name, nickname, or acronym, e.g., eclipse.technology.ecf, eclipse.technology.buckminister, etc.

Mailing Lists.

New projects typically have a single [shortname]-dev@ mailing list. When multiple components are being developed by independent teams, the new project may choose to have additional mailing lists of the form [shortname]-[component]-dev@. The short name is the same as above.

Package and Component Names.

Typical package and component names are org.eclipse.[shortname].[component]. The short name is the same as above, for example, org.eclipse.ecf.core, org.eclipse.componentassembly.ui, and org.eclipse.buckminister.connector

This page is moderated by Ian Skerrett (Eclipse Foundation)