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Subject: Re: [dita-lightweight-dita] (Not so) silly question about acronym

And this is why it's nice to have content people involved ...

An acryonym is a pronounceable abbreviation formed of the first letters (sometimes syllables). A simple abbreviation has no expectations of being pronounceable.
Anything with dashes or mixed case letters becomes a pain to remember when it comes to case (there are two XML editors that I can think of right off the bat that are crazy-making to type out properly).

Even explaining what DITA stands for is one of those cringe moments for me, as starting with Darwin puts people off, and it tends to go sideways from there. FINCH is cute but as a marketing tool, sounds rather .... oversold (think of Ron Popeil selling this "Fully Intelligent hair growth system ... and wait, there's more!")

Here is my thought process as I went through the various options.

LD (abbreviation as lightweight is a single word but a Google search on this would yield lots of other popular results)
LWD (abbreviation first letters of both syllables - of the other LWD acronyms, one is in accounting and the other means Last Working Day so not as contentious as searching for DITA and coming up with the burlesque version)
LWDITA (not quite pronounceable but works in writing)

LIWD (pronounceable acronym but not recommended for the phonics; too close to lewd)
LID (Pronounceable but as it's already a common noun, has lots of room for confusion around search and usage)
LIDITA (makes an  easy-to-disambiguate abbreviation in search and is pronounceable)
DITALI or DITALIT (pronounceable and a unique search term)

Of course, there's DITA-Light which is a hybrid, but rolls easily off the tongue.

My question (wearing my marketing hat now) is how important is it to keep DITA as part of the name, to show the connection to DITA? I ask because it's a lightweight yet extensible typing architecture, so one could also have:

LITA (Lightweight Typing Architecture)
ELITA (Extensible Lightweight Typing Architecture)

LEICS (Lightweight Extensible Intelligent Content Schema) (I'm sure someone will jump in here and say that content schemas are the wrong terms but you get where I'm coming from in acronym-land)

So, my £0.02 worth this morning ...


On Wed, Jun 29, 2016 at 6:34 PM, Tom Magliery <tom.magliery@justsystems.com> wrote:

This stuff is always "(Not so) silly".

I remember going on 20 years ago a discussion thread in the "SGML for the Web" committee at W3C called "Naming the baby". Backronyms like FINCH always have appeal, but rarely are anything but clunky. Can you imagine if the new spawn of the markup community in 1997 had been called MAGMA? That was one of the actual possibilities on the table, with a meaning filled in and everything. (Hmm, now why does that one stick in my head?) Thank goodness James Clark came up with "XML". At least I think it was James. Every other possibility effectively vanished from consideration within seconds of that idea.

Anyway, I have no stake in this matter, but FWIW the name I've had in my own head ever since this all started is not on Mark's list: LWDITA.

Tom Magliery
JustSystems Canada, Inc.

-----Original Message-----
From: dita-lightweight-dita@lists.oasis-open.org on behalf of Mark Giffin
Sent: Wed 6/29/2016 10:14 AM
To: dita-lightweight-dita@lists.oasis-open.org
Subject: Re: [dita-lightweight-dita] (Not so) silly question about acronym

I have been using "LW DITA" (no hyphen) as a shorthand. I personally don't like the hyphen in "LW-DITA". But I do think it's a good idea to have an official short version, thanks for bringing this up Carlos. I would follow what we decide on. I think it's something we should use consistently in "official" subcommittee communications like the upcoming spec. It's a branding thing that can cut down on confusion.

For the record, our official OASIS subcommittee name is "Lightweight DITA Subcommittee".

Here are some names I wrote down a while ago when we were discussing this. Like Carlos, my first choice was always FINCH.

    Lightweight DITA
    DITA Lite
    DITA Light
    FINCH - Fully Intelligent New Content Hierarchy

Mark Giffin
Mark Giffin Consulting, Inc.

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