The other day I got another question about the zombocom org on GitHub that prompted me to write this post. This org,, holds most all of my popular libraries). Why put them in a custom GitHub org, and why name it zombocom? Let’s find out.

Why a custom org?

If you’re maintaining one or two libraries, keeping them in your GitHub user’s namespace is easy enough. For me, this is The zombocom org has 18 libraries, 16 of which I created.

I want to encourage people to contribute to my libraries, so I’ve taken to giving commit access to developers who land a successful PR. I still control releasing, so this permissive default is intended to allow developers with ambition to express themselves while giving me an opportunity to QA and chime in on changes.

I wanted to take this a step further and give them access to ALL my libraries to make it even easier to contribute. This strategy is time-consuming if my libraries are all under, so I moved them into a custom org name and called it a day.

Why name it zombocom?

Making a custom org name is familiar for top-rated gems/libraries. For example, or My most popular library on zombocom is get_process_mem with 52 million downloads. But an org with that same name would be overly restrictive.

Custom orgs are usually named around a common theme. But my libraries don’t have a shared theme aside from being a thing I wrote that hopefully makes your life easier.

I didn’t want 16 namespaces for 16 libraries. I wanted a place where anything was possible. So I named it after

Anything is possible at Zombocom. The infinite is possible at Zombocom. The unobtainable is unknown at Zombocom. Welcome to Zombocom

Another org inspired this move This org was initially used for Nokogiri (the most popular XML/HTML parsing library for Ruby), and other libraries were added over time. The name is a joke from the movie Donnie Darko:

Sometimes I Doubt Your Commitment To Sparkle Motion.

The Nokogiri library and the sparklemotion org were created by Aaron Patterson, aka tenderlove. I asked him about it at a conference once, and he said he made it for similar reasons.

Some ask if I also made, but the answer is no. I have nothing to do with that site and don’t know who originally wrote it. The name is a tribute to a meme before memes. If the author ever wants to share my org name to put their website source, that would be fun. After all, anything is possible.

If you want to get started in open source, but need a helping hand, check out my (paid) book How to Open Source or (free) service CodeTriage