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A library to name and identify things

Project description


Roke is a tool and a library to create identifiers. The goal is that these identifiers should be:

  • More or less unique.
  • Easy to read, so you can read it to someone else over a phone, for example.
  • Configurable: not a single pattern in how they look
  • Customizable: it should be easy to do things like "make it work in spanish"

To do this, inspired by a talk about Magic Wormhole ... I did pretty much the same thing they did.

Command Line Tool

By default, Roke will give you identifiers made out of two nouns and a small number. Like this:

$ roke

You can tell roke to print more than one identifier, so you can choose a nice one.

$ roke --count 5

You can change the pattern of the identifiers:

$ roke --count 5 --pattern '{noun}+{noun}'

Roke comes with two basic dictionaries:

You can add more dictionaries by putting files with the ".txt" extension and one word per line in any of the following places:


Python Library

You can use Roke inside your own projects by using it as a library. This example shows how:

>>> import roke
>>> roke.load_dicts()
>>> roke.gen_identifier('{noun}-{smallnum}')

That's all there is to it.

Technical Notes

So, how unique are the identifiers?

If you use the default pattern {smallnum}-{noun}-{noun} there are only 925 072 020 possible identifiers. So: NOT VERY UNIQUE.

Do not use this as a password or a secret! ... at least not using that pattern.

They should be unique enough for situations where you just need something to be "unique for a while" in a certain environment. Like, container names, or maybe your children.

Mandatory XKCD:


Full Comic

Why the name?

Roke is the name of an island in Earthsea. To know more about Roke and names, just read the Earthsea books by Ursula K LeGuin, they are awesome.

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