This is a repost of one I wrote back in December 2008. It came up again recently in a question via email and I noticed it's a pretty old post so I thought I'd plug it again.
Sometimes a name is just too much, too long, it just doesn't fit in a room. The stock Name parameter for a room is easy, it's already there waiting for us to us. When we use abbreviations in this parameter we end up with some full names and some abbreviations. An abbreviation of "T." for Toilet might be fine on a plan view but it is less than stellar in a schedule. We could use another stock parameter like comments to store an abbreviation instead but that subverts its usefulness for actual comments.
Shared Parameters to the rescue!
I've written several posts about shared parameters in the past so I won't go into making them again in this post (see bottom). This is what you need to do to get a new parameter working in a project.
Create a shared parameter (called Abbreviation for example)
Create a room tag family that uses your shared parameter, save the Family and load the family into your project
Add a Project Parameter (Settings > Project Parameter) using your shared parameter too. Assign the parameter to the Room Category
Use the parameter in your rooms, set-up a schedule and tag your rooms with the appropriate tag.
This gives the best of both worlds. Supply abbreviations for names that are unruly and don't bother for reasonable names. A schedule will make it easy to define either and those that don't have abbreviations don't "need" them. Just make sure you use the correct tag to display the value you really want people to see. You could also use this technique to provide a room name in a second language, if necessary.
I've posted a revised copy of my Egress Example project that contains a working example of the shared parameter, tag and schedule.
This post Shared Parameter File: A Little Clarification provides a full list of the posts I've made in the past on the subject of Shared Parameters.