popular words map

How Popular Are Your Favorite Words?

The Oxford Dictionary continuously adds to its archive of over 600,000 words, including modern terms like “bromance” and “brexit,” to stay up to date with the present-day lingo. But they don’t just pick any words to include in their warehouse of words. They actually have an entire process that they go through when choosing a word, such as how popular or widely used a word is before they update their list.

With that in mind, think of all the terms you use in a day. How popular do you think they are? Have they been included in the Oxford Dictionary or would they even be considered? Using “The Great American Word Mapper” by Jack Grieve and Andrea Nini you can see what the top 100,000 words are and where they are being used through Twitter data.

The data comes from billions of tweets compiled by Diansheng Guo back in 2014. With that information and the location data provided from Twitter, Grieve and Nini, forensic linguists from Aston University and the University of Manchester respectively, determined what the top 100,000 words were in the collected tweets and identified how often each word was used in every county in the United States.

After Grieve and Nini were able to determine these terms as well as their locations, they used a spatial analysis technique known as hot-spot testing to create the smooth mapping style, which you can adjust, that you see in their interactive.

Search for your own words here or look at the full data set here.

[Via: Quartz]

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