Dialect Maps of the United States

North Carolina State University grad student Joshua Katz has gone beyond the classic "do you say soda or pop" to map the dialects of American English. Katz took the data collected by Burt Vaux from a survey of American speech patterns and projected the results onto a map of the nation: Link | The Interactive Map

See if you agree with the results:


View more over at Katz' project page over at North Carolina State University: Link - via Business Insider


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"Bubbler" was Kohler's trade name for their drinking water fountain. I was told (by a Kohler employee) they sold most of their "Bubblers" in Wisconsin and the Mass/RI area and not many other places. Thus the trade name became the common name for the drinking fountain in those places.
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I've always found it interesting how the Chicago area is this weird amalgam of American language dialects. It's sort-of an anything goes place. You can do something like call a midday meal lunch but call an evening meal dinner or supper and no one thinks you odd for doing such. I'm guessing its the southern migratory influence that creates a weird dual terminology.

Same goes for trash/garbage can or slaw/coleslaw. You'll hear both terms used interchangeably, often by the same individual.
Another good example is yard/garage/rubbish sale, all three are used on signage and in reference to having a sale of your old junk on your front lawn.
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I spent quite a bit of time with the interactive maps. The deeper one travels into Wisconsin, the stranger the language becomes. Having vacationed there for a decade, all I can suggest is to load up your iPod with head-banging music and practice water skiing.
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