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I'm writing an auction site specifically for selling board games, and I'm a big believer in ubiquitous language and that the right naming makes the code design stronger. This is why it is paining me so much that I'm struggling to think of a term for the abstract of an item in a lot.

An auction will have many lots. A lot will have one or many items. An item could be a boardgame or a boardgame expansion. When adding an item a user will look up from a list of boardgames and boardgame expansions. What is that a list of? At the moment I'm using the BGG term "thing" and I hate it.

The best alternatives I have are product and box. Both of which are improvements, but both vaguer than I'd like.

Edit: Trying to add a better example. If I wanted to group things that could be cars or pick-up trucks, but not carrots, I could use the word vehicle.

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    If it contains items, then: itemlist. Commented Apr 15, 2020 at 14:13
  • The question is more aimed at a name of the items in the list. Item is already taken, so I'm trying to come up with something else that's more informative than another version of oojamabob
    – Red
    Commented Apr 15, 2020 at 17:51
  • You are mixing concepts. An item cannot be further divided—unless every item is necessarily made up one one or more pieces, parts, or components. As soon as you get to a single item, it cannot (normally) be described as the sum of even smaller things. Commented Apr 15, 2020 at 19:42
  • What's wrong with item? It's way better than thing or oojamabob. game item? article means "an item of goods": merriam-webster.com/dictionary/article. In auction terms: *object*—"Lot - This term refers to either an individual object or a group of objects that are offered for sale at auction as a single unit. Each lot is assigned a number in our catalog for easy identification during the auction." auctionsneapolitan.com/Auction-Terms-Glossary.html Commented Apr 15, 2020 at 19:42
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    Just a thought, but i’m not sure i’d want to tie my whole auction codebase to boardgames. What happens when a friend of yours says “I want to start an auction site for selling bicycles and bicycle components” and you say, “Man, I wrote a whole auction system that would be perfect, except it only works for board games.”
    – Jim
    Commented May 16, 2020 at 19:08

2 Answers 2

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SKU or Stock Keeping Unit is the business/stock control term for each distinct item offered for sale. It can refer either to the item itself or a unique identifying number/code (which in modern retail often corresponds to a unique bar code). Commonly each separate item would be (and have) a separate SKU if it was sold separately: so a board game would be a SKU, and expansion pack 1 would be a different SKU, and expansion pack 2 different again. Of course it's not specific to board games and expansion packs. See also Shopify's explanation.

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How about menu item? From Merriam-Webster, a menu is:

a: a list of the dishes that may be ordered (as in a restaurant) or that are to be served (as at a banquet)

b(1): a comparable list or assortment of offerings // a menu of television programs

Offering might also work.

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