Help Rename ODK "2"

The PMC is seeking the community’s participation in renaming ODK “2”. As previously discussed on the forum and at the convening, there are concerns that using the number “2” in the name creates confusion causing users to think the Tool Suites are sequential (build upon each other) when in fact the Tool Suites are parallel and are supposed to complement each other (focus on different usage models).

A rename process was [proposed] (Proposed Process to Rename ODK 2) on the forum and after many thumbs up, the PMC is moving forward with a slightly modified process:

  1. Start a brainstorming forum topic for ODK 2 name suggestions and an online survey for suggestions for community members who do not feel as comfortable suggesting names on a public thread.
  2. The PMC will take the list of suggested names and consult with a subset of ODK 2 developers to produce a narrowed list of suggestions for discussion.
  3. The PMC, ODK 1 TSC, and core ODK 2 developers will try to reach consensus on a single name through a time-bounded public discussion using the narrowed list of suggested names as a starting point.
  4. If consensus cannot be reached, the PMC will then seek a method to resolve the remaining issues. This could include holding a vote on the forum based on badge level or some other metric. The method used to finally resolve any issue is left to the PMC to determine the details based on the issues that have yet to be resolved. The PMC is hopeful that we will not need more than step 3.

Please suggest a single word to replace the number “2” in the name of the ODK “2” Tool Suite by either posting your suggestion below :point_down: OR submit your idea anonymously via this online survey.

I’m going to throw a bunch of ideas out and see if anything sticks. I realize this is a sensitive topic, and that it is important that we choose carefully, but I want to try from a few angles. Most of these will probably not stand up to scrutiny, but I am hoping some will start a conversation.

  • ODK “App Builder” Suite - Its kind of long and clunky. I’m trying to convey that this suite allows you to build rich applications on top of it.
  • ODK “Platform” Suite - Again, trying to communicate that you build applications on top of it. It might be too broad.
  • ODK “Tables” Suite - It steals the name from the ODK Tables tool, but it captures that this suite uses database tables, and points users at what is probably the “central” tool. It sets it apart from the more “collection/survey” workflow of the ODK 1 tools.
  • ODK “Services” Suite - This also steals the name from an ODK 2 tool, this time from the only necessary tool that all ODK 2 deployments will have. It doesn’t imply much about the functionality, just a tool as a reference point.
  • ODK “Data Management” Suite - This is to reflect that all the data is on the device, though I wonder if this doesn’t differentiate itself enough from ODK 1.
  • ODK “Deployment Architect” Suite - This is one of the roles we defined in the ODK 2 documentation; this isn’t meant to imply functionality so much as just use a central ODK 2 term.

Alternatively, we could go more abstract, though this is maybe straying from ODK tradition

  • ODK “Chameleon” Suite - Because you can change how they look and act to suit your needs
  • ODK “Orchid” Suite - Because it takes some extra work but its rewarding in the end

Sounds like a good process here for a sensitive and challenging topic!

Alas, I have not come up with any genius ideas for naming (pretty sure my “ODK Extra Complicated but Mostly in a Good Way!” idea will not pass muster as an actual name, although “Orchid” has the right idea).

I did want to offer some feedback on suggestions from @Jeff_Beorse relative to my experience. Of the options, I think something along the lines of “ODK App Builder” (perhaps shorter, too bad ODK build is already in use, but can get out the thesaurus and iterate through “ODK Design” and other synonyms) best encompasses all the pieces that are included. The others seemed too narrow or confusing to me, here’s why specifically:

  • “Platform,” to an economist, doesn’t exactly communicate that you build applications on it (although this may be clearer to those coming from a development background).
  • “Tables” implies to me just tables (possibly tables that sync), and not the survey interface or other tools
  • “Services” sounds more like supporting components for some other program (e.g. “Services” support ODK Collect)
  • “Data Management Suite” is more what I think I do in STATA – processing and managing the data – rather than collecting the data
  • “Deployment Architect,” to an economist (maybe not a programmer), is unclear/confusing.

Sorry to be mostly about what doesn’t make sense, but hopefully still a helpful perspective!


ODK Manifold
ODK FreeForm
ODK Advanced
ODK FreeForm Advanced

How about rebranding ODK 1 as well?
ODK 1 = ODK FreeForm, and
ODK 2 = ODK FreeForm Advanced

This sort of spells out the difference and gets away from numbers all together.
Works on a few levels also.

This is good feedback. I am definitely guilty of thinking too much like a developer.

I thought a lot about single words that could replace “App Builder”. They tended to be overly general or overlap with ODK 1. The best I could come up with was ODK “Composition” Suite.

In general, how do we feel about a 2+ word name? It does break ODK tradition, but its not a single tool we’re naming either.

Something that gets at the need to do more setup work in terms of creating the thing for your use case?
ODK Framework
ODK System Builder
ODK Composer
ODK Components
ODK Blueprint
ODK Designer

“chameleon” or “orchid” or something along those lines could be fun but I think it would also really stand out among the other names. although if you also gave something abstract to ODK1, and had both suites have a moniker, that might be enough to make is seem like a uniform thing and not a one-off?

Great to see so many suggestions! Here’s my take on some of the challenges as I see it and a naming suggestion.

The oldest ODK tools were called “ODK Tool” (e.g., ODK Collect). With the release of ODK 2, that convention was kept (e.g., ODK Tables). I think that adds to confusion because it’s not obvious what tools are compatible.

I don’t think “ODK __ Tool Suite” helps in that regard because it’s a mouthful when in use and so it’ll be dropped. Note that in the comments so far, people have already dropped “Tool Suite”. That dropping makes it difficult for users to distinguish a tool from a tool suite.

Adding a suite name also does not help identify the tool when said tool stands alone. This is an important consideration because the pick-and-choose nature of ODK tools often means that individual tools are used alone.

I agree with @DavidM that some symmetry is important in naming. That is, ODK 2 implicitly renamed ODK into ODK 1. Names that use some adjective will implicitly name the other suite the opposite of that adjective and we should be careful about that.

I think we should also be careful about how long the name is. For example, “ODK2 TSC” is a lot shorter than “ODK Chameleon Suite TSC”. Name length manifests itself in everything from URLs to forum tags to logos.

With that all in mind, I was thinking one option might be “ODK X” as a suite name and prepend “ODKX” to all the tools in that suite. “X”, to me, is a nice way to capture that the tools require more technical skill, are more platformy.

I’ve been thinking ODK X (or ODKX) was a good name. The only problem is what to say when people ask what the X stands for.

This is just outside the parameters set forth above, so ignore me if it’s unhelpful, but what about:

  1. Open Data Kit
  2. Open Data Suite or Open Data Platform

You say, “It’s for whatever you want to make it! That’s the power of ODKX.”

ODK eXtreme
ODK eXtra
ODK eXtensible

How about having a pseudo-acronym for the name? We can rename “ODK ‘2’ Tool Suite” to “ODK TTS” without assigning any particular meaning for “TTS”. This way the name will be somewhat similar to the current name and the name will also be quite short.

On the simple and short theme with an X and sounding techy … How about:

Open Data Kit (ODK) and
Open Data KonnecTX (ODKTX)

ODK Sync, as data is bi-directionally synched
ODK Trans, as it is meant to manage transactional operations

I also like “ODK Sync” as this is probably the most defining and asked for feature compared to ODK1. The possibility to customize the look of it is nice, but really only secondary to the core sync functionality.

However I agree that it would probably make sense to also talk about rebraning of ODK"1" the same time. Maybe ODK1 could be “ODK Submit” and ODK2 could be “ODK Sync”?

Below are the name suggestions from the Anonymous survey to continue the brainstorming on the thread.

  • Complicated
  • Flex
  • Complex
  • Advanced
  • Flexible
  • Workflow
  • Suite
  • extendable
  • malleable
  • design
  • Advanced
  • Awesome
  • Open Data Suite (ODS)
  • ODK Advanced
  • Approach
  • {Single Entry} Sufficient for over 100 launches of ODK: Actinium Aluminium Americium Barium Berkelium Beryllium Bismuth Bohrium Cadmium Calcium Californium Cerium Cesium Chromium Cobalt Copper Curium Darmstadtium Dubnium Dysprosium Einsteinium Erbium Europium Fermium Francium Gadolinium Gallium Gold Hafnium Hassium Holmium Indium Iridium Iron Lanthanum Lawrencium Lead Lithium Lutetium Magnesium Manganese Meitnerium Mendelevium Mercury Molybdenum Neodymium Neptunium Nickel Niobium Nobelium Osmium Palladium Platinum Plutonium Polonium Potassium Praseodymium Promethium Protactinium Radium Rhenium Rhodium Roentgenium Rubidium Ruthenium Rutherfordium Samarium Scandium Seaborgium Silver Sodium Strontium Tantalum Technetium Terbium Thallium Thorium Thulium Tin Titanium Tungsten Ununbium *Ununhexium *Ununpentium *Ununquadium *Ununtrium Uranium Vanadium Ytterbium Yttrium Zinc Zirconium

i suggest the name ODK tools suite

Wouldn’t have thought of them myself but ODK X or ODK Advanced look pretty good.

ODK A and ODK 1 anyone? (relevant link)

For ODK 1:
- ODK One
For ODK 2:
- ODK Dual
- ODK Sync

Sounds like many are coalescing around ODK X suggestion?
Using any of Adam’s example meanings (eXtreme, eXtra, eXtensible) or some of the anonymous suggestions on Waylon’s survey (eXtendible, fleXible, Flex); the names work by being contradistinguished from ODK well.

When are the PMC, 1&2 developers et al looking to discuss and come to a consensus on new names (or not :slight_smile: ) ?