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  • We are sexier than Calgary

    Even in all this cold, Edmontonians feel hotter than the rest of the planet

    Shannon Proudfoot
    CanWest News Service

    Thursday, November 30, 2006

    CREDIT: Larry Wong, The Journal, file
    It may not look like it on the street, but people here call themselves sexy 14 times more often than anyone else in blogs monitored by a new website.

    Edmonton feels 14 times sexier than the rest of the world -- just ahead of Calgary, which considers itself 10 times sexier than everyone else. Vancouver is the third-angriest city on the planet -- with Winnipeg and Ottawa claiming the fifth and sixth spots -- and earlier this week, Vancouverites were feeling five times more "crappy" than the rest of the country.

    These and countless other tidbits can be gleaned from We Feel Fine, an online art project that measures the world's emotional temperature by cataloguing thousands of sentiments poured out in blogs each day, including 70,000 written by Canadians.

    "I was struck by how personal people's blogs were -- it was like reading diaries," says Sep Kamvar, co-founder of the project.

    "People tend to blog when they feel these extremes. People have a need to express themselves, and express themselves to the public."

    The brain of We Feel Fine (www.wefeelfine.org) is a data collection engine that scans popular blogging sites such as LiveJournal, MySpace and Blogger every 10 minutes for statements containing the words "I feel" or "I am feeling."

    The sentences are scanned for 5,000 adjectives ranging from "disgusting" to "blessed" and catalogued, along with any accompanying images, according to information in the authors' blog profiles.

    The project has collected over six million bits of emotional driftwood from one million blogs so far, and up to 20,000 new "feelings" are added each day.

    "It makes for a beautiful collage of intense feelings and something that reflects reality, which is muddled," says Kamvar, a technical lead of personalization services at Google in San Francisco. "There are both your highs and your lows."

    We Feel Fine is thoroughly addictive. Visitors can sort results into endless combinations of emotion, gender, age, location and even weather conditions, providing a glimpse of how women in Glasgow feel when it rains, for example, or the mentality of 30-somethings in Boston.

    Torontonians were feeling four times as "big" as the rest of the country and three times as "confident" recently, while Montreal residents felt "safe" and "old" three times more than everyone else. Regina and Victoria revelled in feeling more "free" than other Canadians and Saskatoon residents felt "sorry" twice as often as everyone else.

    Nanaimo was feeling "guilty" and "good" in almost equal measure -- and twice as much as the rest of us -- while Halifax residents felt most "comfortable."

    But the most interesting discovery for Kamvar, who created We Feel Fine with Internet artist Jonathan Harris, is that there are more similarities than regional differences in the way we collectively feel. The 10 most popular emotions -- including "better," "bad," "right" and "guilty" -- tend to be the same no matter where people are blogging from, he says, and the commonalities are especially pronounced between Canadians and Americans.

    There's been some interest from academics who want to use the data for research, Kamvar says, but so far no papers have been produced.

    He and Harris ultimately view We Feel Fine -- which uses multi-coloured bouncing dots and animated mounds of what looks like Jell-o to depict the emotions of the blogosphere -- as more a work of art than a science project.

    "All we're doing here is providing a window onto the world," he says. "This is really kind of like everybody's art piece."

    Perhaps the most surprising revelation from We Feel Fine is that Canadians are not shivering more than the rest of the world.

    Residents of Victoria, Australia, complain about being "cold" 30 times more than anyone else, followed by Mississippi and New Jersey.
    © The Edmonton Journal 2006




    Copyright © 2006 CanWest Interactive, a division of CanWest MediaWorks Publications, Inc.. All rights reserved.
    Noah's ark was built by volunteers...... The Titanic was built by professionals.

  • #2
    I heard that on The Bounce this morning. I'm damn sexy....lol.
    Thus the task is not so much to see what no-one yet has seen, but to think what nobody yet has thought that which everyone sees. - Schopenhauer

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    • #3
      "Edmonton is Sexier" should be part of a marketing campaign.
      “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

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      • #4
        who cares


        Ottawa-Edmonton-Vancouver-Edmonton

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        • #5
          Originally posted by IanO
          who cares
          WTF?!!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by E-Town Crusader
            Originally posted by IanO
            who cares
            WTF?!!
            i dont care how we feel, we definately are NOT the sexist.....for major cities, well top 5/6 we are definately the most inattentive with regards to dress, cut, and fitness IMO.

            i love Edmonton, but god we need to, and i quote justin timberlake, get our "sexy back"


            Ottawa-Edmonton-Vancouver-Edmonton

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            • #7
              no...you just didn't.....hang your head in shame....quoting JT...

              ...but yes...we need a couple fashion lessons here...
              My hope is that you can finally get rid of the anger in your heart, and fill it with peace, compassion, understanding, and a desire to uplift rather than suppress.

              After all, we are all together on this home, this pale blue dot, the "only home we've ever known.”

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              • #8
                I just kind of assumed that Edmontonians were 'getting some' often enough that they didn't have to work for it by dressing well or being fit. I mean, what else is there to do in the winter? Golf?

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                • #9
                  How's your tee time in Victoria lately..... :P
                  My hope is that you can finally get rid of the anger in your heart, and fill it with peace, compassion, understanding, and a desire to uplift rather than suppress.

                  After all, we are all together on this home, this pale blue dot, the "only home we've ever known.”

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by RichardS
                    How's your tee time in Victoria lately..... :P

                    Well, today it's beautiful and sunny, about 6ºC, and except some for some shaded low patches, the golf courses are ready to go. :P

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