The name gopher comes from a conjunction of two circumstances, first that the software was designed to "go fer" material all over the net, and second that it was conceived at the University of Minnesota, whose mascot is the Golden Gopher. Internet space has been colonized by young males for the most part, who distribute names around as arbitrarily as 19th century land speculators did marking the American prairie. Tolkien characters seem to have had their day, but whimsy is never far away. The first gopher-searching tool was called "archie", apparently for innocent reasons having to do with searching network "archives", but this meant that the next tool, which searches menus across the net, was called "veronica" (if I recall correctly, that stands for Very Easy Rodent-Oriented Network Information Cataloguing Application), and not long after "jughead" (whose disambiguation I do not recall -- it's a search program that looks only at sub-menus on a particular gopher) emerged. The fading of gopher from public view leaves some of us with a hankering to know how somebody would have gotten Richie Rich into the picture.