What's in a name?

Names, they’re funny things aren’t they? Particularly project ones. I’ve never really been great at coming up with project names, or clever acronyms. However remembering what acronyms stand for is almost a prerequisite for anyone who works for CETIS, and has anything to do with JISC :-). The issue of meaningful names/acronyms came up yesterday at the session the CCLiP project ran at the Festival of The Assemblies meeting in Oxford.

Working with 11 partners from the education and cultural sectors, the CCLiP project has been developing a CPD portal using XCRI as a common data standard. The experiences of working with such a cross sector of organisations has led members of the team to be involved in a benefits realisation project, the BR XCRI Knowledge Base. This project is investigating ways to for want of a better word, sell, the benefits of using XCRI. However, one of the major challenges is actually explaining what XCRI is to key (more often than not, non-technical) staff. Of course the obvious answer to some, is that it stands for eXchanging Course Related Information and that pretty much sums it up. But it’s not exactly something that naturally rolls of the tongue and encapsulates its potential uses is it? So, in terms of wider benefits realisation how do you explain the potential of XCRI and encourage wide adoption?

Of course, this is far a from unique problem, particularly in the standards world. They tend not have the most of exciting of names, and of course a lot of actual end users never need to know what they’re called either. However, at this stage in the XCRI life-cycle, there is a need for explanation for both the technical and non-technically minded. And of course that is happening with case-studies etc being developed.

During a lively and good natured discussion participants in the session discussed the possibility of changing the name from XCRI to “opportunity knocks” as way to encapsulate the potential benefits that had been demonstrated to us by the CCLiP team, and create a bit of curiosity and interest. I’m not sure if that would get a very positive clappometer response from certain circles, but I’d be interested in any thoughts you may have.

One thought on “What's in a name?

  1. I think acronyms are the way to go… Catchy titles like “opportunity knocks” are great but I think acronyms stand out more… They are short, to the point… and easy to pick out on paper (all caps)… Also, they are more descriptive … Those 4 simple letters XCRI explain more to me than “opportunity knocks”.

    All the best!

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