The name game. My My.

I’m pleased that the “my” prefix to SAP product names has been dropped.  I’ve never liked it, even when it first came out. Now it seems really dated, but not so dated that it could have some sort of retro appeal.  Calling products by years is also really dumb, especially when they ship in a different year.  So mySAP ERP 2005 is now called SAP ERP 6.0 (I think)

Dan Farber picks it up here

Yet changing names causes unnecessary confusion, and wastes everyones time and money with renaming exercises. Think of all the brochures,websites  technical documentation  that need to be altered, not just at SAP but also frfor partners and customers.  Searching the web and places like SDN is made harder. Transparency suffers. In Orwell’s 1984 Winston Smith had the job to change words and delete unwords… he would easily be a VP here.

We throw words like component, features and engines recklessly. My request to the naming police. Keep it simple, keep it consistent.

Dan, Ed, Craig and I invented a game at one of the evening events at Sapphire called SAP naming conventions. It is a shameless derivation of the BBC classic just a minute.

And as The Minute Waltz fades away…please talk for 60 seconds on a random subject without hesitation, deviation or repetition.

And as the ERP RAP song fades away…please list SAP’s release names in chronological order, without hesitation, deviation or repetition.

I won’t play the podcast here, but perhaps we will need to rerun it in a quieter environment.

“why is everything numbered differently?”

“Is it a component is it a feature it a platform?”

“what is ECC 6.0, I’ve got 4.6c”

“Netweaver 7.0?”

“what does the s in Netweaver 2004s stand for?”

Actually perhaps we could run it like the university challenge. We could play consultant vs the marketing department.

“A starter for 10.”

“fingers on the buzzers.”

“SAP’s HR solution has had several names. For 10 points give me at least 3 of them.”



I was relieved when the naming folks didn’t follow the trend of flickr. Then we would be calling everything RP again. (RP was the name of the HR solution in R/2)

At this rate next Sapphire we ought to have Prince singing. (sorry I should have said. prince symbol.svg ,The Artist Formerly Known as Prince, TAFKAP, or simply The Artist)

Seriously though.

Simplicity was at the core of Hasso’s keynote and  SAP developers are hard at work to make our software easier to use. Yet we can’t expect customers to believe that we take simplicity seriously if our naming conventions and changes confuse everyone. Let’s leave fashion to our customers like Hugo Boss, Espirit, Orsay, French Connection and Kenneth Cole…..

I hope that with A1S just down the road the naming will be simple but most importantly consistent.


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4 thoughts on “The name game. My My.”

  1. The “Symbol Prince” is now officially “Prince” since he was able to regain trademark control of his name.

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