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Visualizing the "Why" of the World's Favorite Numbers?

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POSTED IN: Data Analytics & Visualization Blog

What is your Favorite Number?

Just got back from a run where I listened to a great RadioLab story 

"It’s hard to think of anything more rational, more logical and impersonal than a number. But what if we’re all, universally, also deeply attuned to how numbers … feel? Why 2 is warm, 7 is strong and 11 is downright mystical..."   http://www.radiolab.org/story/love-numbers/

They interviewed Alex Bellos  who did a great poll http://pages.bloomsbury.com/favouritenumber asking asking people about what their favorite number - and why.  He got 30k responses!  

His 'full list can be downloaded here'.

Link: results of Alex Bellos's global online poll to find the world's favourite number

This got me thinking - what would the aggregated user feedback look like on a particular number?  Would the "Whys of the Fives" contain meaning?  And what viz can be done beyond wordclouds? 

Anyway - this is neat stuff - I've reached out to Alex (probably a long shot) to see if he may be open to doing a test run on one number - e.g. see if there is "Raw" data behind the aggregated file, that might be interesting - e.g. how often do people use "symmetrical" with "8" or ;  May also poke around with some screen scraping from various mathy-web sites.

If you've got any ideas (or data) - or are interested in collaborating - let me know!  

CHeers!

Ryan

(PS - Mine is 3, closely followed by 8 and 12)

*data source bellos site above

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About the Author

Ryan Anderson

Ryan Anderson

Hi! I like to play with data, analytics and hack around with robots and gadgets in my garage. Lately I've been learning about machine learning.

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Created: July 25, 2014

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