Other Stuff

Friday fun with word frequencies

Calling all word nerds! For some Friday fun, try the Macmillan Red Words Game, which tests your awareness of English word frequency. It’s not as easy as you might think.  After a couple of tries, my highest score was 195. Can you beat it?

Along the same lines, Roberto Trotta has written an interesting book.

From the big bang to alien worlds, from dark matter to dark energy, from the origins of the universe to its destiny, The Edge of the Sky is a tale of the great discoveries and outstanding mysteries in modern cosmology — with a twist. Astrophysicist Roberto Trotta has used only the 1,000 most common words in the English language to talk about difficult concepts in cosmology in beautifully simple terms that everybody can understand.

I haven’t read the book yet. But the story on NPR is worth a listen. If you visit Trotta’s website, you can even use the 1000-word rules to try writing something yourself. 

For the TRUE nerds (researchers), there are word frequency tools galore at Corpus.BYU.edu from the work of Mark Davies.


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