06 May 2010

He had gone vs. He had went vs. He has gone vs. He has went

As of late, I started to notice that a lot of people seem to be using the simple past tense of "to go" instead of the past participle for the past perfect, e.g., "he had went" instead of the correct "he had gone." I wasn't aware of this phenomenon so I used Google Insights for Search to see how common this is/was. I also included the present perfect to see if that showed the same pattern.


Not only has this "error" been around for years but it only applies to the past perfect and not to the present perfect. "He had went" dominates but "he has went" doesn't. Hmm... By the way, I wasn't able to check on whether this phenomenon has geographical variation because the data Google uses seem to come overwhelmingly only from the US.

19 April 2010

Gregory House vs. Lisa Cuddy vs. Temperance Brennan vs. Seeley Booth

Today, I compare the main characters of the popular TV shows House M.D. and Bones. First, we look at the regular Google web search:


In short, Dr. House rules but Dr. Cuddy has clearly been gaining on him. Then comes Dr. Brennan closely followed by Agent Booth, both steadily increasing in search volume but distinctively behind the two front runners—just like the shows themselves, I guess. Google Insights for Search also provides us with country-specific breakouts and rankings:




While the House M.D. characters are most popular in Mexico, the Bones ones are in the US. Overall, House M.D. is more an international phenomenon than Bones. I take it this must be due to the latter not being broadcast in so many countries. Bones characters' regional interest is odd: hardly any European countries make into the top 10 but, for instance, Zimbabwe, Zambia, South Africa, Yemen, etc. do.

27 February 2009

Hugh Laurie vs. Olivia Wilde vs. Kal Penn vs. Robert Sean Leonard vs. Peter Jacobson

Someone on a thread at the German DrHouseForum.de forum asked why Robert Sean Leonard was not included in my face-off. The short answer is of course that Google Insights for Search doesn't allow more than five terms for comparison. Anyway, today I compared the other four main characters of House M.D. against Hugh Laurie so that some measure of comparison with the first House M.D.'s face-off is possible.



Remember that Wilde, Penn and Jacobson only joined the TV show in late 2007. Nevertheless Leonard really didn't score very well in Google-popularity even compared with the second-draft "ducklings." Undeserved in my opinion. Wilde scored particularly well both due to her pre-House M.D. popularity and the peak surpassing even Laurie twice in size in September 2008. The former is explained by her role in the TV show The O.C. while the latter is linked with her increased screen time due to her relationship with Dr. Foreman on the medical procedural. Penn too had some earlier renown from his many appearances on TV and in movies, esp. Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle. Let's have a look at the country rankings for the actors in question:











Funny, Wilde who has both Irish and US citizenship wasn't particularly popular in Ireland but beloved in Canada. Penn, the son of Indian immigrants to the US, did score well in India. Note that Leonard's profile compared best with the first House M.D.'s post pattern: Hungary on no. 1, etc.

08 February 2009

Hugh Laurie vs. Jennifer Morrison vs. Lisa Edelstein vs. Jesse Spencer vs. Omar Epps

Sorry for the absence of posts... I am in the process of moving halfway across the US. Anyway, today I bring you a face-off of the main actors in the hit TV series House M.D.



As expected, the inimitable Laurie stuck out head and shoulders above the others. Morrison was a clear second. The no. 3 spot was shared by Edelstein and Spencer but notice that the former has become much more Google-popular than the latter since the end of 2007. I'd say this was due to her increased profile on the show and the "demotion" of Morrison, Spencer and Epps. Morrison however didn't suffer much from her decreased screen time. Let's look at the actors' "standing" by country next:










Very interesting but also puzzling was Hungary scoring three no. 1s, a no. 2 and a no. 3. Why were/are Hungarians so crazy about House M.D.? Note also the high rankings of some other former East Bloc countries such as Estonia, the Czech Republic and Bulgaria. Overall, the actors were popular beyond the usual suspects: a worldwide phenomenon!

29 January 2009

Car vs. Auto vs. Automobile vs. Motor Vehicle

The US (still) is a car driven society... How do people in different regions address their motorized idols?



The general pattern was that car and auto dominated but were clearly no. 1 and 2, in that order. The other terms were way behind. Let's see the ranking of each term by states:








Car and auto saw little differentiation in regional usage patterns. Car was no. 1 in Florida and the least Google popular in Montana and Kentucky. The no. 1 state for automobile was Arizona while Louisiana came in last. Note that New Mexico was one of the lowest in marked contrast with its neighbor Arizona: odd! Alabama stuck the most with automobile, North Dakota the least. Finally, motor vehicle was most popular in New Jersey very closely followed by Arizona again. The term was least in use in the car maker state par excellence: Michigan.