Photini – what’s in a name?

In my last post here I wrote about my decision to start writing a digital photograph metadata (i.e. EXIF, IPTC, XMP) editor, having failed to find one I like that runs on Linux. The good news is that I’ve made good progress and it’s now pretty much ready for public consumption, although it desperately needs a lot more documentation.

So now, I present to the world Photini. Probably the most difficult decision was what to call it. My original plan – “Jim’s photo metadata editor”, or JPME for short – didn’t really feel right, and when I discovered that JPME stands for “Joint Professional Military Education” then it had to go.

We live in a world where product names say little about what the product does. Who would guess that Orange™ is a phone network? BT is no longer British Telecom, and BAA is no longer the British Airports Authority. Full names are much too specific. So why should my bit of software have a code letter sequence for a name?

I’ve noticed one or two other open source projects adopting girls’ forenames, so I did a quick web search for lists of girls’ names. I also thought it might be nice to have some connection to photography, so I zapped down the list to names beginning Ph. And there it was – Photini.

Photini is a Greek name meaning ‘light’. She was a saint, according to the Christian orthodox church, and on one church calendar (according to her feast day is my birthday! I’m an atheist, but I like a nice coincidence as much as anyone else.

PS Apologies to all those real people called Photini who now find a bit of lousy software has taken their name.

1 thought on “Photini – what’s in a name?”

  1. I've just installed Photini after seeing it in Linux Format. I was using gThumb to add my metadata but recent updates seem to have taken a step backwards with metadata compatability.

    Photini looks like it has a lot of potential and I'm looking forward to seeing how it progresses.


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