June 20, 2003 spout

Naming My Feed

Fri, June 20, 2003

When I built the Windows Developer News feed on my home page, it was an attempt to build a Windows equivalent of SlashDot. Unfortunately, I’m not interested in keeping up on all the news in the Windows developer space and the few folks that have stepped up to post on this site are largely spammers (although not all of them). Also, in my own feed subscriptions, I find that the ones I’m most fond of are from individuals, not groups. Plus, my grandboss recently put a fine point on it, I hate the name of your feed. That’s not what it is.“

So, I’ve moved this feed to be just stuff from me. The problem was, I didn’t know what to call it. In addition to posting links to stuff I produce, e.g. tools, writings, editorial, etc., my site’s feed is really about the things that I find interesting and my personal insights, so I need a name that reflects that. Also, I’m a big fan of puns, alliteration and double meanings (the logo has *3* meanings), so a name with those elements was important.

As always, when I’m faced with something like this, I turn to the community, specifically my own readers, who seem to have an unhealthy desire to participate in things like this. When I asked them for their input, I was overwhelmed with more the number of responses; and good ones, too (it probably helped that I was giving away a free seat at the Applied XML Developer’s Conference [July 10th — register now!] to the one I picked)! Here’re some of the best that I didn’t pick:

  • The Naked Programmer” from Richard Caetano. This has a nice tie in with the logo and connotes the openness I’m fond of in my writings. The problem with this one is only that it already appears on the web.
  • ″.Nirvana” from Yaniv. This one goes nicely with the logo and my current technology of choice. However, as much as I like .NET, it’s not likely to be the last disciple I embrace, so I don’t want to tie myself to it.
  • Sells-A-Go-Go from Michael Weinhardt. This one from a former protege very much appeals to my sense of fun, but it only has one meaning.
  • Longhorn Foghorn from Mickey Williams. Again, this one ties me to a wonderful technology, but one that I’m legally obligated to stay mum about for a while longer. However, if I have anything to say about it, Mickey, you have named the Editor’s Blog for the Longhorn DevCenter when it goes live. Thanks!

The one I did pick was a blend from three guys: Mike Prilliman, Chris Burrows and Roland Tanglao. They each gave me parts of my new RSS feed name: Marquee de Sells: Chris’s insight outlet”. This name has tons of wonderful qualities:

  • it’s unique on the web
  • it’s short and distinctive
  • I share a birthday with the Marquis de Sade
  • the Marquis and I share an unhealthy obsession with our respective writing topics of choice
  • my logo is an abstract of my naked picture (the Marquis’s topic of choice : )
  • a marquee is an entrance (like my homepage) with a sign announcing what’s new (like my feed)
  • my feed is an outlet for my insights, whether code, writing or interesting things I find I the web
  • insight outlet” sounds like “inside out,” which connotes how open I try to be (ok, I’m stretching on this one, but insight outlet”
    *does* sound cool : )

Of course, once I’d picked a name that blends entries from three people, I had the problem of how to award the prize: a single seat at the the Applied XML Developer’s Conference. And then I remembered that it’s my conference, so all three of them get free seats. Welcome!

BTW, the Applied XML Developer’s Conference is going to rock. Register now before all the seats are gone.