Friday 1 November 2013

Culture & Vocabulary: Popular Names & Origins Of Words

Popular Boy's Names
Image from The Atlantic
When a baby is born, they have got to have a name. In the old days, people searched books, asked friends, called their English teachers. Now, we search through the web. Have you ever wondered what names was popular in a certain year in the past? Deadspin's Reuben Fischer-Baum took data and developed colour maps showing the popularity names by States from 1960s through 2012. See the GIF above for boy's names and below for girl's names.

Popular Girl's Names
Image from The Atlantic
The Atlantic has quoted some summaries of the trend illustrated in the GIFs above, so feel free to read them up in the links given in the Resources section below. For me though, I'd like to think what is the first person that comes to my mind when I see these names. Here is a list of people who popped out.

Image from rawkblog

Image from medialib
Austin 'Danger' Powers
Image from Google
Jose Mourinho
Image from gistmania

Cameron Diaz as "Mary"
Image from Google

Jessica Alba
Image from Google

Lisa Simpson
Image from wikimedia
Jennifer Aniston
Image from zenfs

Do you think these are good examples?
Image from SCMP
Names and words are fun to look at sometimes, and I guess the Chinese netizens will agree with me. Take for example, the word "Tuhao", meaning "newly rich" or "nouveau riche" in French, has caught the attention from the West and earned the making of a short video by BBC!

Cool, huh? How about doing a little more research to see what names and words are trending?

There is another article talking about the origins of the word "Dude", but I'm not too keen on discussing that. No harm to take a look though. What's the Origin of the Word "Dude"? @ Mental Floss

Happy weekend!


Map: Six Decades of the Most Popular Names for Girls, State-by-State Deadspin's Reuben Fischer-Baum @ jezebel

America's Most Popular Boys' Names Since 1960, in 1 Spectacular GIF @ The Atlantic

A Wondrous GIF Shows the Most Popular Baby Names for Girls Since 1960 @ The Atlantic

#BBCtrending: Tuhao and the rise of Chinese bling @ BBC Trending

BBC News - #BBCtrending : Tuhao and the rise of Chinese bling @ YouTube

What's the Origin of the Word "Dude"? @ Mental Floss