It's time for Waste Your Friday Afternoon, the Popehat feature that seeks to give you an excuse (as if you needed one) to be unproductive.
This week it's all about words, and how they are used.
Google, in its ongoing quest to do vast, unfathomable, and vaguely frightening things, has announced a vast new word database, containing about 500 billion words from about 5.2 million digitized books from the last four centuries. The resulting Books Ngram Viewer lets you plot how frequently words, or names, have been used over the centuries, permitting a glimpse at both language and culture.
You can inquire, for instance: what happens when a previously innocuous word that meant an uncontroversial thing becomes re-purposed to mean a much-talked-about and controversial thing?
Last 5 posts by Ken White
- Prenda Law: The Sound of One Shoe Dropping - May 20th, 2013
- This Is The Most Wonderful Legal Threat EVER - May 17th, 2013
- OMICS Publishing Group Makes A Billion Dollar Threat - May 15th, 2013
- Rakofsky Versus The Internet: Advantage, Internet - May 12th, 2013
- Hilarious New Team Prenda Argument: Judge Wright's Order Is Irrelevant Because of Gay Marriage - May 9th, 2013