Playing with Google’s New Tool (Heh)

We’re totally hooked on Google’s new book search tool, which lets you search and graph the frequency of words in millions of books from 1800 to today. You can even compare and contrast two words or phrases to see how they fare in print over the years. It’s intended for scholars, but it’s free for anyone to use. “We wanted to show what becomes possible when you apply very high-turbo data analysis to questions in the humanities,” said one of the geniuses behind the toy — er, tool. He calls the method “culturomics” — which is a hell of a lot catchier than the tool’s title: the Books Ngram Viewer (gotta love the nerd factor). We took the tool for a test drive…

Clitoris (taking a nose dive around 1920, for some reason):

Vagina (what’s up with the massive spike around 1880?!):

Blow job vs. Cunnilingus (the 1980s were a boom time for cunnilingus, apparently — not so the blow job):

Multiple Orgasm (with a sudden spike in the 1950s):


Premature Ejaculation (a big, er, rise in the 1980s, and in decline ever since):


Female Ejaculation (almost caught on around 1910, then practically disappeared again until the 1980s):


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