Yeezus Maria!

So I was using the Lord’s… son’s name in vain in an e-mail i was writing, and was dumbfounded by the kanyeness of its (Polish) spelling.


Obviously I wanted to find out if this is the kanyeest¹ of the different spellings of Jesus. And, indeed, Polish Poland ranks #1, again:

2 72 Jezus      Dutch
2 72 Jezus      Polish
2 72 Jezus      Slovenian
2 72 Yesus      Indonesia (Christian)
2 72 Yexus      Hmong Daw
2 66 Jeesus     Estonian
2 66 Jeesus     Finnish
2 66 Zjezus     Limburgish
2 66 jeesus     Sinhala
3 66 Jezusi     Albanian
3 60 Yesu       Chinese (Mandarin)
3 60 Yesu       Cornish
3 60 Yesu       Korean
3 60 Yesu       Swahili
3 60 Yesu       Tamil
3 60 Yesu       Telugu
3 60 Yesu       Thai
3 54 Hesus      Filipino
3 54 Jesus      Afrikaans
3 54 Jesus      Portuguese
3 54 Jezuz      Breton
3 54 Yeshu      Hebrew (Jewish, secular)
3 54 Yeshu      Malayalam 2
3 54 Yeshu      Marathi
3 50 Jézus      Hungarian
3 50 Jēzus      Latvian
3 50 Jėzus      Lithuanian
3 50 Yeshua     Hebrew (Christian)
4 40 Iesu       Japanese
4 40 Iesu       Welsh
4 40 Isus       Bosnian
4 40 Isus       Croatian
4 40 Isus       Romanian
4 40 Isus       Serbian
4 40 Isus       Ukrainian
4 40 Jesu       Hawaiian
4 40 Jesu       Venetian
4 40 Jezi       Haitian Creole
4 40 Yasu       Chinese (Cantonese)
4 36 Iisus      Russian
4 36 Jasus      Mirandese
4 36 uJesu      Zulu
4 33 Gesùs      Sardinian
4 33 Jesús      Catalan
4 33 Jesús      Icelandic
4 33 Jesús      Spanish
4 33 Jèsus      Occitan
4 33 Jésus      French
4 33 Jésus      Norman
4 33 Xesús      Galician
5 40 Ieso       Georgian
5 36 Eesho      Malayalam 1
5 36 Gesù       Italian
5 36 Gesù       Piedmontese
5 36 Gesù       Sicilian
5 36 Gesû       Ligurian
5 36 Gesü       Lombard
5 33 Ġesù       Maltese
5 30 Chesús     Aragonese
5 20 Jisu       Garo
6 22 Isa        Indonesia (Islamic)
6 22 Isa        Kazakh
6 22 Isa        Turkmen
6 22 Iso        Tajik
6 22 Iso        Uzbek
6 20 Îsa        Kurdish
6 20 İsa        Azerbaijani
6 20 İsa        Turkish
6 18 `Isà       Arabic (Islamic)
6 18 Ìosa       Scottish Gaelic
6 18 Íosa       Irish
6 16 Giêsu      Vietnamese
6 16 Gèsù       Neapolitan
6 15 Iisoús     Greek (modern Greek pronunciation)
6 15 Ježiš      Slovak
7 14 Ježíš      Czech

¹ High Kanyeness = low Levenshtein distance (L column) and high similar_text() (ST) value to “Yeezus”.

The results might be biased by bad transcription and poor Unicode implementation, but then again, who cares. I blindly relied on copy & paste; sorry if I f’d up your favourite languages spelling (and score).

A cock’s knowledge

There’s this curious Polish word “galimatias” (perfect visualization here). It has no Polish Wikipedia article, but maybe the “other languages” will help me learn something about its etymology:

  1. Gobbledygook
  2. Galimatías
  3. Kapulakieli
  4. Supercazzola
  5. Gallimathias
  6. Gallimatias

The english entry (1) is obviously of no help. The Spanish article is – via Google Translate – a nice example of “almost meaningless, muddled, obscure language” itself. For some reason it prominently features Proper names derived from Matthew, probably because it cites Matthew (Matias) as one possible origin. The other is the (corrupted) word Barimathea.

The other theory recounts the story of “Matthias, who fought for ownership of his cock” (again, translated by Big G) and his lawyer who “repeatedly shouted cock Matthias (Mathias gallus)” in a “speech very tangled and unclear” which helped transform Matthias into matheia, knowledge.

The Norwegian (5) article shares this theory. So does the Swedish (6), but places the story in “ancient Rome” and adds an awesome alternative theory: “disputations at the medieval University of Paris was so awesome that participants likened cocks”, a cockfight of knowledge, so to speak.

Finnish and Italian (3 and 4) offer more fun than insight. Sadly, there’s no etymology of “Kapulakieli”, and G Trans has more trouble with Finnish. I’m pretty sure their version of galimatias is an umbrella term for legalese, tech jargon, and “Swedishisms”. Again, Google transforms the “Example The phrases” into gibberish poetical examples:

“Take place on a large scale”
something happens to someone, “by”
one’s “own” something
words in consequence of the effect of the problem and the contract.

and, drum roll:

words due to the holistic, in respect of center of gravity of the input, bet, in the long run, the framework, aim for the sector, including, with respect, to carry, size, resources, depending quarters and by.

The Italians have developed a linguistic strategy “to make fun of established power, represented by police, soldiers or police, being able to hold a conversation without sense for several minutes" "seasoned with profanity in disguise”, to fuck with the Man, so to speak. A movie coined the term Supercazzola, “which is the prefix super- and the noun cock”. (This being Wikipedia obviously described as a portmanteau.)

Now, instead of a literal translation of Supercazzola, I’ll offer this

Facebook’s smiley sprite is a comic!

Facebook’s smiley sprite is a comic!

I added my interpretation – the left column is the original file, 35 pixels wide and 2164 pixels high. It’s a “css sprite”, a caching/bandwidth-saving technique. The file can be found here, as of now: The URL looks very temporary, it might be gone. You can find it by web-inspecting/debugging a smiley in your Facebook messages/chat and checking the smiley’s element’s background-image CSS property.

Thonic Youss

now that there’s the band Wampire, this would be the name of my band.


Or: Veekend


(crochet penguin by Lisa, with apologies to Mike Kelley. Polo shot by Sam, with apologies to Zach Braff.)

Super King > Expanded Queen

while wikispellchecking another post I stumbled over this:

“The examples and perspective in this article may not represent a worldwide view of the subject.“

normally I would have glanced over this, but I happened to be on

What could be more harmless than a mattress? I guess these delightful images might have something to do with the dispute:


Of course one immediately wonders if a UK King is bigger than a US King or even a Super one
You could look this up in the super detailed chart in this mid-important article (this is Wikipedia in the end. You might question the omission of the San Francisco King). Wait let me help you:

You’re welcome. BTW I put this in the public domain if anyone wants to put it on Wikipedia.

The Last Will and Testament of Google

So i let Google (auto-)complete Dinosaur Comicshandy template.

The algorithm I used to determine what to type in the search bar is super complicated but totally legit. Here’s the rules I remember:

  • Try the largest context next to / around the blank = the full clause
  • Use only clauses, that is “stuff between punctuation”
  • Use only matches that fit the blank’s expected word type (e.g. verbs where a verb is expected)
  • Trim context words from the boundaries (alternating) until there’s matches
  • Trim words from matches to make them fit
  • Break rules until a match is found
  • Fun is welcome

En detail, where it’s worth it (context I used is emphasized, blank text strong, omitted parts of suggestions in (brackets)):

  • the last will and testament of rosalind leigh: a 2012 movie. Unfortunately, Google Instant/Autocomplete stopped working after a while, probably due to the loads of queries flooding from my IP, so I’ve lost the context to the first four blanks. I’ll try to recall it. And correct it as soon as they unban me. They just did after 20 minutes.)
  • i am of sound mind and body: niiice.
  • (shipping) possessions to australia: The alternative was “to kill a mockinbird”.
  • with the exception of meaning: What sounds like a profound indie album title is actually a popular yodaspoken question.
  • go to church because: Because why wouldn’t you. picked over “must go to restaurants in nyc” for (algorithmic) balance.
  • they might be giants: second suggestion was “they live”, which would have gone nicely with
  • over my dead body: picked over “all over my body”, forgot why.
  • an inspector must spend three (years here (for karate)): Of course I wondered what or who might be a “karate inspector” (and how I could become one) and where she or he must spend three years, but apparently this is some urban myth (or misconception) spurred by an obscure crossword clue.
  • spend three months in a (buddhist temple): Which is not a buddhist standard time frame, but the most common one for tourists, apparently.
  • in a haunted house: duh.
  • where is: short for Isabell, of course.
  • tie them over: something about snacks?
  • if they come for your guns: ah, them.
  • to have my haircut
  • i want my funeral to be a party
  • extremely loud and incredibly close
  • that’s so raven: first I learned that raven is an adjective, then that this is the title of “an American Supernatural teen sitcom television series starring somebody (I never watched the Cosby Show) named Raven-Symoné (the accent is silent, though). The more you know!
  • i suspect nargles: something something Harry Potter. I thought it was some bum dude named Nargles. I had to break the clauses-only rule here.
  • they be like: Oh T-Rex, speak properly! Other scary, unexplicably not blacklisted suggestions not further investigated.
  • into a book
  • blasted into oblivion: Booom!
  • and tell cosette i love her: Les Mis. Booom!
  • way to sms: meh, but the best i could find.
  • their satanic majesties request: less meta than the first suggestion “their there”. Actually Autocomplete stopped working right here, I wondered if it wasn’t that ”Daaamn” that got me temporarily banned. That T-Rex!

data-visualizing American Elf

Big Thank You & Apologies to James Kochalka!

As James Kochalka’s daily diary comic American Elf ended on 2012/12/31 after 14 years and at least 5106 strips. I wondered about its visual evolution.

First, let’s look at its shape’s consistency. The comic/page comes in a near square format and usually consists of a heading, 4 square panels, and the date. Sometimes it’s just 3 or 2 panels, one big panel, a list or… something. The early strips were black and white. This is what an average (literally) strip looks like:

I used a fairly simple technique which I once thought I had invented, while it’s pretty much as old as photography – it’s basically a multiple exposure (of stuff that looks alike). Here’s a nice example (hover over the names on the bottom right).

The 4-panels-structure dominates, then there’s the headline at the top, the date at the bottom (where you can even see the space between month/day and year). While the colors cancel each other out (it’s not the early strips that cause the grayness), you can see a light skew: the left border isn’t really straight.

Let’s look at this through time:

Here, each image contains one fourth of the strips, i.e. the first 1200+ strips or 3 years in the top left corner, and so on, left-to-right, top-to-bottom.

It’s apparent now that the first years were black and white, and had no heading. The early color strips tended to pink/red/purple tones, and headlines seem to be yellow predominantly.

Again, but with more granularity/temporal resolution:

Here, each sample contains roughly 80 images – so it’s like favorite color of the season, i guess.

Now let’s look at all strips individually:

The strips are laid out  following a hilbert curve. Other than a left-to-right-top-to-bottom text-like layout (with line-breaks), it preserves locality: a month is not a line, but a block. That’s why all the early strips sit in the upper left corner, and are followed by the bright colored in the upper right corner. The curve then turns to the bottom, to the left, and down again, before it ends in the bottom left corner (hilbert curves only come in specific “capacities”, and the 5106 strips fit uncomfortably between 4096 and 16384).


When I look at this data visualization I feel a little, well, uneasy. It’s a cold analysis of a work of art full of heart and warmth. It compresses over 5000 days of work into on neat graphic. Plus, I made a machine crawl your website and download all those handcrafted images…

But that’s just one way to look at it – I hope it rather is an awe-inspiring celebration of a masterpiece (these are heavy words), made with handcrafted scripts. And (image)magic(k).

So, again: Thank You & Sincere Apologies, James Kochalka!