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Because it's Friday: US Dialects

In the video below from The Atlantic, the differences in the way US citizens describe or pronounce various things is illustrated in a series of phone calls (via Sullivan):   If you're wondering how your dialect fits in, you can try the New York Times Dialect Quiz. Answer 25 questions, and it will identify the 3 US cities that most closely match your dialect. I'm not a native US English speaker (I grew up in Australia, and spent many years in the UK before moving to the US West Coast in 2000), so I basically flunked the quiz. My words for a freshwater crayfish ("yabbie") or that area of grass by the road ("nature strip") weren't on the list, and so I got placed somewhere in southern Florida (which I guess is at least as far South as you can go!). Judging from the responses from some of my friends on Facebook, though, the quiz can be uncannily accurate if you were brought up in the US. By the way, the background images in the video and the NYT dialect quiz are both based on the work of Johsua Katz, and developed in the R language. The analysis was originally developed at NC State University, and Joshua Katz is now a graphics editor at the New York Times. That's all for this week — enjoy your weekend!

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More Stories By David Smith

David Smith is Vice President of Marketing and Community at Revolution Analytics. He has a long history with the R and statistics communities. After graduating with a degree in Statistics from the University of Adelaide, South Australia, he spent four years researching statistical methodology at Lancaster University in the United Kingdom, where he also developed a number of packages for the S-PLUS statistical modeling environment. He continued his association with S-PLUS at Insightful (now TIBCO Spotfire) overseeing the product management of S-PLUS and other statistical and data mining products.<

David smith is the co-author (with Bill Venables) of the popular tutorial manual, An Introduction to R, and one of the originating developers of the ESS: Emacs Speaks Statistics project. Today, he leads marketing for REvolution R, supports R communities worldwide, and is responsible for the Revolutions blog. Prior to joining Revolution Analytics, he served as vice president of product management at Zynchros, Inc. Follow him on twitter at @RevoDavid

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