Evan Soltas
Feb 9, 2013

Ngramming the Universities

One of my worst time-killing habits is, honestly, messing around with Google Ngrams, the tool which graphs word frequency in the Google Books corpus over time. (I know. I need better ones.) In the past, I've used the tool to show the disappearance of the "long s" from English literature.

Here's another cool ngram graph, which I just posted on Twitter. It's of American university names.

I strongly encourage you not to interpret these as "rankings" of the universities. There are enough of those out there. All this shows is how frequently the name of the university as written shows up in literature. (For this reason, I couldn't graph "Brown," "Penn," or "Columbia." You should also be suspicious of the flip-side effect for the graphed terms.)

(If you click the image, it will enlarge.)