LANGUAGE -- December 23, 2010 at 1:32 PM EDT
Geeking Out on Words Just Got Easier
With the release of Google Books Ngram Viewer, diving through the rise and fall of a word's usage across 5.2 million books spanning several decades became quite easy.
While researchers at Google Labs and Harvard even have a new word for it -- culturnomics: "the application of high-throughput data collection and analysis to the study of human culture" -- the tool is insightful and, dare I say, fun.
For a bit of perspective on Ngram, we caught up with Erin McKean, CEO of Wordnik, a site that encourages the study of every word in the English language. She also gave us some insight into new words that might make their way into our vernacular.