In yet another illustration of how broken the US patent and trademark system can be, we’ve had to change our name to avoid conflict with someone else’s trademark. I think that’s utterly absurd, and I can give clear reasons why none of the other possible claimants you’ll find in a Google search should be considered to have a superior claim according to what I know of the law, but the folks at Red Hat who do actually know the law gave “CloudFS” a big thumbs-down and that’s all that really all that matters. That led to a scramble for new names. Any term remotely related to “cloud” or wind or water vapor is already gone by this time. “Elastic” is almost as bad, as are several other terms we might use. Still, we came up with several options and HekaFS is the only one that got a legal thumbs-up.
So, where does this name come from? First and foremost, Heka is an Egyptian god of magic. That’s why Kaleb suggested it, and it even has its own hieroglyph which could potentially serve as a logo. Personally, I prefer the Northern California slang interpretation. Mostly I’d just like to forget about how marketers, lawyers, and wannabes (like VMware and Oxygen Cloud) get to ruin everything for actual innovators. The best response to people who make the world worse is to make the world better, so it’s HekaFS and it’s time to make whatever it’s called as cool as it can be.