Years ago, I owned the domain MySquash.com after trying to find something interesting (I started with apricot). That domain lasted for about 2 years and then I abandoned it for samuraipanda.com because I realized it sounded pretty strange. Samuraipanda was a unique, mish-mash of cultures (Japanese and Chinese, respectively) that could create an image in peoples minds. It also had 12 characters in it, an intimidating domain length and one not easily fitted to most forms. But I stuck with it. Lately, though, I’ve been furstrated by it’s length. I’m using tools to auto-complete it for me on computers (AHK and TextExpander), but that still means I have to spell it out for others (“No, not …uri, …urAi. Yes, as in the sword guy. Panda…P.A.N.D.A…Panda. Yes, one word. .com… .COM”). And often it doesn’t fit in space afforded me on various forms (nothing like getting to the Panda and realizing you’re at the end of the page. “I’ll just put the .com underneath”). It’s a bit unwieldy.
So I started looking for smaller domains. Ideally it would be a word, but squatters have used dictionaries to grab all the good english names. I tried other languages. Most of the western languages that are easy for Americans to pronounce (much less spell) are also taken. Inspired by Ubuntu, I went African, but that’s like going Indian. There’s dozens of African languages and dialects. I did snag babayetu.com (Our Father, in Swahili), but it didn’t quite click (though it might still). It is 8 characters long though. A couple months ago I was reading up on Taoism and stumbled across the three virtues: Kindness, Simplicity, and Modesty. Taking the first two letters from each word, I snagged KiSiMo.com (.org, and .net). It was only 6 letters. I would have preferred humor instead of modesty, but kisiHo doesn’t sound right. Then today I was writing my status report and couldn’t remember my team name, so I put weoni (what ever our name is) as a place holder and thought “hmm, that’s an interesting domain possibility”. A quick jump to godaddy and I saw it was free. I promptly requested weoni .com, .org, and .net. A 5 letter domain name is a pretty good find, especially when you can say it out (We-Oh-Ni) and it sounds almost Native American. I could say it meant anything (“It’s Swahili for Great Lover. The Oh is for Oooohhhhh”). But I knew what it actually meant. And being the grammatical person that I am, it didn’t feel right. Was “What Ever” one or two words. I’d seen both (and generally used the singular version). A quick check of the web found this rule on bartleby.com:
"You can use either whatever or what ever in sentences"
I thought, cool, I’d gotten it right. But I continued reading to this line:
"However, you must use the one-word form when whatever is used as an adjective"
I’d used it wrong. “What ever our name is” is incorrect. “Our Name” is the noun, “Whatever” is the adjective. The correct way to write it is “whatever our name is”, woni. And of course, like any pronounceable 4-letter domain, woni.com is taken. I doubt I’d want it. Is it pronounced Woo-Ni, Whan-I? The first is easly confused with who-ni and I don’t want to be clarifying it all the time (“Woo, not Who. No, not as in Doctor Who, Woo as in Woooo, like a ghost would make”). It’s the same reason I don’t use the word “chains” in a domain. It sounds too much like “change”.
I hate domain names. I’ll stick with samuraipanda.com for now. Twelve letter and all.