Elementary OS includes applications with generic names such as Calendar, Files, Music, etc.

It is natural that this site will have a tag for each of these applications. The most obvious name for these tags is the name of the application, but since these are generic words, this conflicts with the general concept.

Tags are a way to classify posts. They are not search keywords; tags should have a single meaning. If I'm looking for a way to do something in the Files application, I'll use the “Files application” tag (example: 1). If I'm looking for a way to work with files, I'll use the “files concept” tag (example: 1).

For simplicity there should be a consistent way to distinguish between application tags and concept tags. Note that tag names will always be styled in lowercase. Some possibilities include:

  • plain tag name for the application, other formulation for the concept. For example: for support questions about Pantheon Files, for questions about file management in general.
  • plain tag name for the concept, common suffix for the application. For example: for questions about file management in general, for Pantheon Files.
  • plain tag name for the concept, application full name for the application. For example: for questions about file management in general, for Pantheon Files.
  • Blacklist the base name and only use compound tags. For example: and .

Moderators can rename tags, so if the naming convention needs to change, that's easy on the technical end. However we should pick a naming convention now, because disambiguating ambiguous tags gets more and more painful the more questions are concerned.


1 Answer 1


You raise some good points. As much as I understand the move to generic names (Files, Music, Calendar...) these will only conflict with the generic terms.

I would be in favor of:

  1. using the generic terms for the generic concepts (, , )
  2. prefix the elementary-specific apps with "Pantheon", for disambiguation (, , ), or maybe with "elementary" (, , )
  3. have synonyms for the former names of the apps (, ).

With proper tag descriptions, this should all work out since the tag excerpt shows up in-place when one is typing a tag.

  • that's a fair request, but currently everything is tagged files and terminal, and it seems a little silly to change it all back - especially as panthon-files is harder for a user to type - especially a newbie that is unlikely to know it's real name and then use files in the wrong place. I think the current set up will do for now to be honest - with just files and just terminal. It's sensible to go for the most basic as the overall name when the complex name isn't used outside of support / dev etc.
    – user3
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:28
  • Not silly at all IMO. We're in beta precisely to flesh out things for the final launch. If things are confusing at this point, there's no reason to keep them that way when we can identify a non-ambiguous alternative. Also, the point of tag redirects is precisely that users don't need to type the pantheon- (or whatever) prefix -- the redirection feature takes care of that. But we as a site get the benefit of having unambiguous canonical tags (to appear in the tag list, etc). As I see it, it's a win-win where we get both convenience on one side and clarity on the other.
    – waldyrious
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:34
  • But if most users are typing files why make that redirect? Why not make pantheon- the synonym that redirects?
    – user3
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:37
  • That's all fine and dandy when they mean the same thing as we intended for the tag, but you can't guarantee that everyone will be in the same page, precisely because without the prefix, the tag is generic and ambiguous. If a user is asking a question about file management in general (or music, etc), what tag are they supposed to use? (cont.)
    – waldyrious
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:40
  • As gilles says, file-management... And note that it's already suggested:elementaryos.stackexchange.com/tags/files/synonyms
    – user3
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:42
  • (cont.) In fact, I'm sorry, I contradicted myself. I didn't mean for files to redirect to pantheon-files. Instead, as my answer states, they should be separate tags with proper descriptions, so that users can choose the proper one when adding a question. Note that that presents no loss of convenience, since the auto-complete feature allows users to type simply "files" and have the "pantheon-files" tag (along with the "files" one, of course) show up in the dropdown box.
    – waldyrious
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:43
  • So files would mean file-management? hmm
    – user3
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:43
  • Yes. That's the correct equivalence, in semantic terms.
    – waldyrious
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:44
  • I have to say that is what Ask Ubuntu uses... But in ubuntu nautilus is commonly known as the name of it, so it is a little different. But there is an idea there. I also won't want to edit them to all have the new tag - @Gabriel says I'm doing too many edits atm (long story) :/ and I don't need another argument about that.
    – user3
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:49
  • I would still say use the common name for the common item, but i think we need to wait a little to see if users are using the wrong tags.
    – user3
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:50
  • Who does the edits is irrelevant - in fact, I'd be surprised if SE didn't provide a mechanism to rename tags. As for waiting to see, why would that change what is the preferred tag nomenclature? There is a semantic rationale for doing this change, not merely a confusion-prevention one.
    – waldyrious
    Jul 14, 2015 at 14:34
  • What is the benifit of pantheon-files over files then?
    – user3
    Jul 14, 2015 at 15:26
  • Clarity/unambiguity, as I said above. We can discuss this further in chat if you want. This comment thread is already way too long...
    – waldyrious
    Jul 14, 2015 at 15:42

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