[OSGeo-Discuss] Renaming FOSS4G

Andy Anderson aanderson at amherst.edu
Tue Oct 6 10:20:39 PDT 2015

Acronyms don’t usually include prepositions, at least in English. Including 2 and 4 is definitely computerese, something that helps separate words that can’t have spaces between them as in command-line Unix, e.g. shp2kml. But I don’t see a need for it here, especially if we want to reach out to nontechnical groups.

No matter what the acronym won’t translate into other languages.

SLFAG, anyone?

— Andy

On Oct 6, 2015, at 12:20 PM, Dan Ames <dan.ames at byu.edu<mailto:dan.ames at byu.edu>> wrote:

+1 4 this comment: "a cool thing 2 do ten years ago"

Actually from an international point of view - and as OSGeo grows - I would think that the 4 in FOSS4G raises more questions than answers since the number 4 and the word "for" are only homonyms in English as far as I know. The German words für and vier don't sound much a like and neither do the Dutch words  voor and vier. And those are probably the closest matches. So maybe it's a bit Anglo-centric to 4ce the 4 on people. For example, "for" in Japanese, ための, sounds nothing at all like "4" in Japanese which to me sounds like "yum".

Similarly, I doubt the Chinese pet shop, "52 Pets" would internationalize very well.  By the way, does anyone know why 6 was afraid of 7? I suspect a lot of people don't, just like I had no idea why my Thai colleague kept texting me 555... But FOSS4G is an established brand now and brands are hard to build and keep. So +1 for pressing forward with FOSS-yum-G...?

On Tue, Oct 6, 2015 at 9:24 AM Randal Hale <rjhale at northrivergeographic.com<mailto:rjhale at northrivergeographic.com>> wrote:
I would like to subscribe to your newsletter. I will bring some fuel - diesel in honor of the largest car manufacturing plant near me (Volkswagen)

It would strengthen the brand of OSGEO with a conference named the same. There seems to be a fairly large disconnect right now with the FOSS4GNA conference and OSGEO. That needs to be much tighter.

Although I'm a bit of a stickler with Free and Open Source - I like the idea of going OSGeo - because that's what I do (at least in my case) - I use GIS and I do it with free and open source tools.

+11 on having to explain foss4g and then dragging osgeo into it.

Lets go one step further and talk to the Geo4all folks into saying osgeo4all.


On 10/06/2015 11:12 AM, Barry Rowlingson wrote:

Okay, this is probably sticking a match under a pile of dry wood but
here goes...

Can we rename The FOSS4G Conference to The OSGeo Conference?


 1. FOSS4G is an established brand

 2. FOSS4G sidesteps the "Free" vs "Open Source" argument by including both.

Counters to those:

 1. Really? Perhaps amongst OSGeo people, but outside our sphere I
have to expand the acronym and then go on to mention OSGeo.

 2. Let's have that argument somewhere else, okay?


 1. Puts the *Geo* visible, not tucked away as a G at the end.

 2. Gets rid of the "4G", which may have been a cool thing 2 do ten
years ago, but not now :)

 3. Removes any confusion with 4G telecoms networks.

 4. Clearly brands the conference as an OSGeo conference. Recent
discussion about the prominence and significance of OSGeo to FOSS4G
becomes moot.

 5. Is easy to explain. The OSGeo Conference is the open source
geospatial conference. See the OSGeo web site. Search for OSGeo. One
acronym to remember.

[I toyed with the idea that the conference should be called "OSGeo
Live!" and renaming the OSGeo Live operating system disc as "OSGeoOS"
but that might be a bit too much :)]

So, this is the discuss list, discuss.

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Randal Hale
North River Geographic Systems, Inc
423.653.3611 rjhale at northrivergeographic.com<mailto:rjhale at northrivergeographic.com>
twitter:rjhale     http://about.me/rjhale
Southeast OSGEO: http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Southeast_US

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