“I asked our lexicographers to show me data pitting ‘geek’ against ‘nerd’ in the Corpus. From this I learnt that:
- ‘Nerd’ frequently appears with the adjectives bumbling, bookish, scrawny, and crotchety, while these descriptions aren’t used in relation to geeks.
- Nerds are also more frequently bespectacled and mild-mannered than geeks – although there are a fair share of bespectacled and mild-mannered geeks too (in the Corpus, we see one bespectacled geek for every two bespectacled nerds, if you’re interested).
- Geeks are more likely to be ‘self-confessed’ and ‘self-respecting’, with more than double the number of ‘geek’ instances paired up with these phrases.
- ‘Computer’ is by far the most common modifier used alongside both ‘geek’ and ‘nerd’, with nearly 600 instances of ‘computer geek’ in the Corpus, compared with 280 instances of ‘computer nerd’. The more technological bent of the geek can be seen in the other collocates that frequently describe them: techno, gadget, and tech (see the simplified table below: it compares the number of instances of these word pairings in the Corpus)
The other significant collocates that occur next to geek (but not nerd) are the references to sci-fi and comic books. This fits well with the Oxford Dictionaries definition for geek as ‘a knowledgeable and obsessive enthusiast’.”
“Well, I was not a writer to begin with; I was a listener.” —Erskine Caldwell
Corporal Luther E. Boger of US 82nd Airborne Division reading a warning sign, Cologne, Germany, 4 Apr 1945 (via Imgur)
Some of the public opinion data trends we routinely track over time and frequently update:
- National satisfaction
- Economic conditions
- Presidential approval
- Gay marriage
- Gun control
- Social networking use
- Device ownership
- Who is a “typical American”
This whole interview was the absolute best!
“That sort of binge-television viewing has become a normal, accepted part of American culture. Saturdays with a DVD box set, a couple bottles of wine, and a big carton of goldfish crackers are a pretty common new feature of American weekends. Netflix bet big on this trend with their release of House of Cards. They released all 13 episodes of the first season at once: roughly one full Saturday’s worth. It’s a show designed for the binge. The New York Times quoted the show’s producer as saying, with a laugh, ‘Our goal is to shut down a portion of America for a whole day.’ They don’t say what kind of laugh it was.”
From Here You Can See Everything by James A. Pearson
“I might warn that civilization as we know it is on the verge of collapse. Poetry—being able to say it concisely, without excess anywhere—somehow lives up to these things that I’m writing about. It does them justice.”
Talking Civilization with Dana Crum
“The impulse may ‘fall’ into the same family as the one that drives us, as toddlers, to touch a hot stove. Driven by a basic instinct for discovery and, ironically, survival—a need to methodically taste-test the environment in which we are to go on living.”
- 13-5 the Senate Judiciary Committee’s vote on a far-reaching immigration bill which would offer the opportunity for citizenship for millions of Americans. The bill will now go up for debate in the full Senate. source
1…2…300+ amendments to this bill.
Whenever you see a big, bold statistic about the fate of college grads, take it with a grain of salt.
Read more. [Image: Federal Reserve]