ROOT7: an opportunity to change the name

I know every developer will hate me, but I could not resist the urge to suggest that the redesign of ROOT in version 7, which will break backward compatibility and is more or less rewritten from scratch, is a unique opportunity to change (slightly?) the software name to something like “SOOT” or “TOOR” or any other thing.

There are several reasons that would support such change:
[li] Maybe we have forgotten after many years of using it, but the first time a Linux admin gets in touch with ROOT, he thinks… Really? No other name was available? I found also a similar remark in … -root.html Fortunately, most of his concerns have been solved to the day, for which everybody is really thankful. The name change would do the rest.[/li]
[li] Googling things related with “ROOT” is always complicated, it mixes with “root”, and so on.[/li]
[li] To give a clear hint to physicists: hey, this is something completely new. Still from CERN, but a new language. This not PAW, and this also not ROOT. C++11/14 is a new language, ROOT7 also. A new image.[/li]
[li] To explicitly break backward compatibility. Avoids that someone tries to reuse his CINT codes calling root -l … and to avoid mixing (without noticing) ROOT versions installed in parallel. Also for recoding, this avoids lazy copy-paste or skipping. And this forces to disentangle old design dependencies of classes that should be independent. In other words, it would force rethought redesign and better encapsulation.[/li]
[li] To easen the bridge between old and new codes, as both versions could be run easily in parallel without the need of calling “source /opt/root7/bin/” … each time you want to change to the new version. Also for the users, to get used to it without needing to “upgrade” the old one.[/li]
[li] It would be a good moment for “restarting” the heavy git repository (>500Mb).[/li]
[li] To get rid of the heavy (and most of the time correct) criticism associated with the ROOT history (, now that a lot of the problems have been or will be adressed.[/li]
[li] When looking for tutorials, it will be easier to distinguish if there is a new website and name, and you avoid using old code with the new software by mistake. [/li][/ul]

In any case, I appreciate all your efforts and would be eager to know your opinions or anger.

Just a pragmatic remark:

I am not saying we should not do it but changing the name implies many changes here and there:

  • The Web site … we will need two I guess ?
  • The forum ? (ditto)
  • The Logo (already will will have to introduce 7 instead of 6 in it)
  • The email adresses (roottalk, gmail address …)
  • roofit roostat -> toofit , toostat ?
  • rootls, rootcp … -> tools, toocp ?
  • io: myfile.root -> myfile.toor ? …

and surely more things I do not have in mind right now…

How about calling it Roo? That would fit with RooFit, etc, it would actually look like ROOT if you write ROO7 (if 7 would still be needed), it would write .roo files, and if the T is kept (which I hope not) then calls would look like ROO::T… :slight_smile:

Just a thought.

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To support ferhue’s idea:

AFAIK, “ROOT” acronym does not stand for anything (I may be wrong here, but I couldn’t find anything related). Why not give it a name that would be unique and stand for something?

Root Object Oriented Toolkit … :wink:

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