[LLVMdev] "Name that compiler"
rspencer at reidspencer.com
Thu Apr 12 22:57:14 CDT 2007
We're now keeping track of the naming process, ideas, etc. on this page:
(would someone PLEASE get us a wiki!!!) ;)
On Wed, 2007-04-11 at 21:44 -0700, Chris Lattner wrote:
> Hi Everyone,
> LLVM is a growing project, and many of us are very fond of it. :) LLVM
> is continuing to grow, both in maturity in specific areas and in scope of
> areas that it is applicable to.
> When we first started the project, we focused on the design of the
> intermediate representation. It is a strong design goal that the IR be a
> self-contained virtual instruction set, which fully describes the program.
> Because of this, we named the compiler LLVM, which reflects well on the
> design of the IR.
> However, the scope of the LLVM project is outgrowing this name. Today
> LLVM does many "non-VMy" tasks, such as serving as a great static
> compiler. It also has components that overlap with traditional low-level
> tool chain components like assemblers and linkers. Further, LLVM's scope
> is about to grow significantly with new front-end technologies (e.g. HLVM,
> new SoC work on a python front-end, etc). For all of these reasons, I
> think that "LLVM" is an increasingly poor name for the project as a whole,
> and it causes a large amount of confusion, particularly with people who
> do not know much about it yet.
> For what it is worth, this is not a new thought. I have been kicking
> around the idea of renaming the project for several years now, but have
> been stymied by not being able to come up with a better name! The problem
> is hard: how do you concisely describe a modern, modular, component based
> compiler and tool-chain system, which can be used for many different
> things, hopefully many of which we haven't even thought of yet? How do
> you pick a name that both memberable, relatively unique (searchable), has
> an open domain name, etc? How do you come up with a name that is amenable
> to making a logo? So far, I haven't! :)
> Note that the name need not capture every aspect of the project. Just
> having a distinguished name with no specific connotation is probably good
> enough. 20 years ago, "google" and "yahoo" had very different meanings,
> and "mozilla" or "firefox" were pretty meaningless. Today, there is very
> strong awareness of what they are.
> As such, I'd like to open up a forum for naming ideas. I think we need to
> continue to use the name 'LLVM' to refer to the IR (i.e. that which is
> described in http://llvm.org/docs/LangRef.html), and we should plan to
> attach LLVM as a suffix to the project name for several years to come: For
> example: "Use the Foo/LLVM Compiler System, it runs infinite loops faster
> than the competition!".
> To make this more fun, "success" is extremely subjective, and I have no
> idea how we will declare a victor (we can figure it out as we go, right?
> :). I propose that people add ideas to the wiki that Vikram and Reid are
> getting set up, and we kick some potential names around at the developer
> mtg in May. That gives us 5 or 6 weeks to come up with a name and/or
> Logo. The wiki isn't up yet, so consider this to be a head start :).
> If we find a good name, we can honor the one who came up with it with a
> small amount of booty. For example, we're prepared to award a compiler
> textbook of your choice (MSRP < $100) to the winner, optionally signed by
> people at the dev meeting if you so desire and if they agree.
> Alternatively, we could do a $100 gift card to Amazon or some other place.
> What say you? Are you up for the challenge?
> p.s., no I don't think "Foo Compiler System" is a good choice. ;-)
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