Is it JQuery or jQuery? Both.

It may sound confusing, but developers these days can avail themselves to two open source projects bearing almost the same name, one called JQuery and the other jQuery. Leaders of these projects, however, are not inclined to argue over the issue and appear to content to let the names stay as is.

JQuery, which has been in existence since 2002, is described on its Web page as "a flexible, query-based source code browser, developed as an Eclipse plug-in." The tool is for Java development.

The recently released jQuery, meanwhile, features a JavaScript library intended to make writing JavaScript code fun by taking common repetitive tasks, stripping out unnecessary markup and leaving them short and understandable, according to the jQuery page.

The two leaders of the projects are aware of the conflict in names and have corresponded.

"I don't want to start a fight," said Kris De Volder, leader of the JQuery project and an assistant professor at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. While admitting he would like exclusive use of the name, De Volder nonetheless describes the issue as a not a big deal and does not plan to fuss.

John Resig, leader of jQuery, feels the same way.

"Unfortunately, it occurred due to a misunderstanding when I originally created the project," Resig said in an email. "I did a search for the name 'jQuery' and found the Java 'JQuery' project, which hadn't been updated since 2004. I assumed that it was defunct and decided to co-opt the name. The week that I launched jQuery, he pushed a new update live of the project."

"I really don't see a conflict brewing over this. The project leader and I exchanged some emails initially and we came to the conclusion that using the name was OK," Resig said.

JQuery, meanwhile, is to be combined with the CodeQuest program database to boost performance. The combined offering is expected to be released in about a year. IBM has granted JQuery developers $22,000 to assist with the project, De Volder said.

Copyright © 2006 IDG Communications, Inc.