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Meanwhile, on the Internet
Tribune Reporters
'Meanwhile' is a collaborative blog about all the crazy stuff on the Internet. Here, reporters from various Tribune desks tell you what you (almost) need to know about topics ranging from technology to YouTube sensations. Contributors: Jim Dalrymple, Vince Horiuchi, Michael McFall, Dave Newlin, Matt Piper, Brennan Smith, Erin Alberty. Edited by Sheena McFarland.

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A new map charts the use of the "f word" on Twitter in real time. Courtesy image
‘F Bomb Map’ shows where people use profanity online

Ever wonder how profane your state or city is? A new project called the "F Bomb Map" aims to tell you.

The map was created by Ottawa-based programmer Martin Gingras over the weekend of Oct. 19. On his website, Gringas explains that the inspiration for the project came after a conversation with two colleagues about swearing, arguments and misuse of the English language.

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"From there our conversation wound it’s way to how it’d be neat to map where people swear," Gringas writes. "Within a few minutes and iterations of ideas, the concept for the app was born."

The map charts the use of the "F-word" on Twitter in real time. So, each time someone includes the word in a tweet, the map drops a little yellow "bomb" sign on the map. You can zoom out and see the entire world, or you can zoom all the way in on a particular place.

I left the map running on my browser for about 30 minutes and in that time only saw one bomb sign in the entire state of Utah. So maybe the Beehive State really is comparatively squeaky clean?

By comparison, most other populations centers in the U.S. were speckled with F-bombs. The East and West coasts were veritable forests of yellow signs.

The Atlantic Cities also pointed out that Americans seem to be fonder of the F-word than other members of the Anglophone world. Australia and the U.K. both have fewer instances of profanity-laden tweets, which writer John Metcalfe speculates may be due to smaller populations and more region-specific profanity.

To check out the map visit www.fbomb.co.

—Jim Dalrymple II



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