Naming things

March 29, 2015

CodeJam is the name I choose more than a year ago for both my domain and home server name.

Choosing this name was tough. I wanted a name that evoked programming, and possibly free software, while still being short and sounding original.

Among all names I thought of, CodeJam was my favorite. “Code” is able to evoke programming in just 4 letters, without being some kind of geeky jargon. “Jam” was my musical touch.

A jam session is when a bunch of musicians get together and start playing with very little or no preparation, like “let’s just play together and see where it leads”. You have a lot of freedom in what you play, but you still need to be consistent with the group. It’s a very rich creative process, and it decently picture my ultimate philosophy with free software; let’s just code together and see where it leads!

Error: CodeJam is already defined

Turns out there’s already something called Google Code Jam. Yeah, Google, just that. If like me you didn’t knew about it, it’s a competition created by Google for recruitment purposes.

How could I not find this before buying the domain (and in fact, during the whole next year)? I don’t know.

I discovered this while mentioning my blog on IRC, when someone replied "Oh, I thought you were speaking about Google Code Jam". And I was like "Wat?.. Holy shit!".

At first, I thought about changing my domain. It meant changing my email, moving all the services I host at home: IRC, XMPP, mail server, web server including my blog and personal page, and would have resulted in a few dead links, unless I keep renewing just to do 301’s. And the hardest part: finding a new name.

So what?

The thing is, I like this name. Except the fact that Google already use it for its recruitment event, I believe it’s a really good choice for the reasons I evoked in the first part of this post.

After asking a few friends’ opinions, and a night thinking about this dilemma[1], I decided to keep CodeJam. After all, Google Code Jam is not a trademark and I don’t care about my blog not being in the top results when searching “CodeJam”. Where’s the problem then?

Long live CodeJam!

  1. Always wait a night before taking an important[2] decision!

  2. First world domain owner problem…