Hi there,

There was some discussion recently on how to name Zope in the future. 
Here are my thoughts and suggestions.

First of all some principles I tend to follow surrounding names.

* I prefer not introducing too many new names at the same time. A 
renaming takes a while to percolate through the community and people to 
gain full understanding of it.

* I prefer naming something that already exists (or renaming something) 
as opposed to naming something that doesn't really exist yet. A name is 
a handle on something that we can then use to talk about it and reason 
about it.

* Naming discussions tend to lead to endless bikeshed discussion. Naming 
stuff is easy so everybody has an opinion, including myself. It's not 
very productive. We don't have clear community mechanisms to make 
decisions either (the Zope Framework Steering Group isn't it; it only 
cares about the Zope Framework. Perhaps the Foundation can be it, but it 
can only approve initiatives from the community in this area, I think.

In this context I'll mention the new name "Zope Framework" that was 
recently introduced and is probably not yet fully understood by everybody.

The Zope Framework is a collection of libraries. It's shared by at least 
the following web frameworks/app servers: Zope 2 app server, Zope 3 app 
server, Grok. Other systems such as bfg use a much smaller subset of 
these libraries.

I see this as following the principles above:

* it's only introducing a single new name. That's why it at least gets 
some acceptance now.

* it's naming something that we were really already talking about. 
Unfortunately we conflated it with "Zope 3", the thing you start that 
has a UI and so on, which retarded the development of both Zope 3 and 
the Zope Framework itself. It's good we have a handle on it now as a 
separate entity.

This "Zope Framework" name and concept is just now percolating through 
the community. Zope Framework is *not* the renamed Zope 3, even though 
it's entirely based on what we used to call Zope 3. Zope 3 continues to 
exist, as long as there are people who are interested in creating an 
installation tool for it and care about its UI. Zope Framework is a 
*separate* entity.

Zope 2 and Zope 3 do have confusing names. I prefer to tweak the meaning 
of "Zope" to be a project identifier instead of identifying software 
directly: Zope is all of the stuff developed by the Zope project. We 
therefore have the Zope Object Database, we have the zope component 
architecture, the zope interface package. This doesn't work for Zope 2 
and Zope 3. It works for Grok by the way: I've been saying "Zope Grok" 
sometimes.

With Zope 2 and Zope 3, we have version numbers that are at the same 
time identifiers of a piece of software itself; they're not really 
version numbers at all. That's why I have been using terms like Zope 2 
App Server and Zope 3 App Server, but that isn't very satisfactory 
either. The 2 and the 3 still imply some kind of evolutionary 
progression that isn't quite what we are doing.

In order to make Zope 2 and Zope 3 fit the pattern, it'd be nice if they 
had names that fit the "Zope is a project, not software" pattern. We 
could rename Zope 2 to Zope Classic, as was suggested. I think we should 
also rename Zope 3 to something else (that doesn't imply it's the modern 
future, as there are other alternatives at least as modern around that 
are more recently developed - we want to get out of that bind).

I think renaming Zope 2 to Zope Classic will be easy. If the Zope 2 
developers are okay with this, let's go right ahead. Not much discussion 
needed. Zope 2.11 becomes Zope Classic 11. It's a huge version number, 
but Zope Classic is over a decade old anyway. Nobody's going to mind. It 
looks impressive and it should be impressive; Zope Classic has been 
maintained for a long time by the community.

I think it's going to be harder for Zope 3, as the "Zope 3" community: 
those people who care about Zope 3 as a piece of software that can be 
installed, hasn't fully formed yet. There's a tool called "zopeproject" 
which is quite misnamed in the light of the above discussion. While I 
sometimes do use that piece of software, I'm far more interested in the 
Zope Framework, myself.

Anyway, I'm rather reluctant to post this as I fear this will be a 
pile-on bikeshed discussion. I'd suggest that anyone interested in 
naming Zope 3 something else should keep quiet for the time being. Go 
and form a Zope 3 interest group first, don't talk about naming too much 
yet in that either, and come back to this topic later.

Let's talk about Zope Classic and see whether renaming Zope 2 to that is 
a step we can realistically take in the near future. Who is in favor of 
that?

Regards,

Martijn

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