We are working on a project to replace the work that wasn't quite done in the best way possible the first time around.

We want the code name to be something that means "this is how you ……… do it, ………", but in a nice way.

What word would I use for this?

  • Is this another programmer-related question, where the objective is to find a name for your upgrade exercise? May 11, 2011 at 21:03
  • 1
    @FumbleFingers: This wasn't for coding. This was for a team activity.
    – Raj More
    Jul 5, 2012 at 13:09

6 Answers 6


• accepted as being accurate and authoritative: the canonical method of comparative linguistics.
• according to recognized rules or scientific laws: canonical nucleotide sequences.

Other alternatives include: established, orthodox, standard, customary, prevailing.

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    To my ear that sounds like "conventional", whereas the OP seems to be asking for "right", or "best" (or something equivalent but more tactful).
    – Beta
    May 12, 2011 at 5:32

To begin with, it seems to me that simply saying "proper" would fit your example nicely, although I suppose a case could be made that it's not the most tactful choice.

Beyond that, if you're talking about something that is formally anointed as proper: official, canonical, recognized, orthodox.

If informally considered proper: traditional, customary, normal.


You might get some mileage out of the warm fuzzies of optimal.


By the book. It may not be one word, but it's still fewer syllables than canonical.


In British English you could try "pukka", as in "This is the pukka way to do it ....."

  • I looked up pukka and it seems to fit. Can anyone explain the downvote? Is there a nuance I am missing?
    – MrHen
    May 12, 2011 at 0:12
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    @MrHen Maybe something political about Britain and Indians? The word seems to have its origin in Hindi.
    – Alan Plum
    May 12, 2011 at 0:37

My two suggestions would be protocol or etiquette. Either one suggests that this is the proper thing to do.

  • Of course, since these are nouns, it would require rephrasing your sentence to say "This is the protocol/etiquette for doing this."
    – Martha F.
    May 19, 2011 at 16:03

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