Baby Name Popularity Charted by Gender ====================================== Complete list of names and charts available Here is the main content of this project: 254 names charted by gender popularity from 1970 to 2005. A list of all the charts allows you to view one chart at a time or multiple charts side-by-side. It is also possible to simply view all the charts on one page. More details follow. These pages contain 254 charts that compare the popularity (in the United States) of several baby names given to boys and to girls. I pulled the names from the top-1000 baby name lists available from the Social Security Administration website, generating charts for all baby names that appeared in both genders' lists in at least one year from 1970 to 2005. When I was processing the data and generating the charts, 2005 was the most recent year available. Gaps in a name chart indicate that the name was not popular enough for one or both genders to make one or both top-1000 list that year or series of years. Please take a look at the SSA Popular Names Background Information for more details about the data behind these charts. Each image has the same data charted twice at different scales. The top chart is drawn at the same scale in every image to better compare relative popularity between names. The bottom chart is scaled to fit the data for each name to better display each name's popularity trends. With some very popular names (e.g. Jennifer), the data is partially or entirely beyond the scale of the upper chart, and must be shrunk to fit in the lower one. The lower chart features more detail. The blue dot indicates the most recent year of available data for each name. A hollow blue dot represents the year 2005 in particular (the end of available data at the time the charts were generated). A hollow black dot represents the year 1970 (the earliest data I considered). All other years are shown as a simple black dot. For example, take a look at 'Jordan' below. Jordan first appeared as a top-1000 name for both genders in 1978, grew in popularity for a while before beginning to decline again. During this time, Jordan was always given predominately to males. Compare this with 'Guadalupe', a predominately female name and one of only a few names that was in the top-1000 for both genders in every year from 1970 to 2005. Guadalupe's popularity appeared to be stable for quite a while after 1970, gained sharply as a name for females (but remained about as popular as before for males) and again appears to be fairly stable. However, the more male 'Jordan' remains the more popular of the two names, even for females, and even as its popularity appears to decline.
Now, go ahead and start browsing the charts. Here are a few selections of names that might be interesting: Names that have been losing popularity since at least 1970: Dana, Kerry, Leslie, Lynn, Robin, Shannon, Shawn, Stacy, Terry Some gender-balanced names that have become popular more recently: Avery, Cameron, Dakota, Hayden, Jordan, Riley, Taylor Names with multiple spellings: Devan, Devin, Devon, Devyn Payton, Peyton Casey, Kasey Jaime, Jamie, Jayme (Jaime has been surprisingly consistent for males) "Placeholder" names, apparently put on birth certificates when the parents hadn't picked a name yet: Baby, Infant, Unknown
I will turn these names into links tomorrow some time. I also intend to fix up the php that's displaying the images to make it easier to compare several charts with each other.[finished 2007-07-11] All charts were generated using R. I don't feel like the charts are really "finished" yet, but I am not likely to go back and work on them more in the future. In particular, I would like to have the values for the initial and final years of each chart, but none of my attempts were satisfactory. Also, haveing year labels at points of interest (shifts in popularity) would be very nice to see, but doing this automatically is not trivial for me, and doing it by hand for every chart is certainly not trivial either. Some flaws in the charts stem partially from my inexperience with R. I had not used it before starting this project, and in some ways it shows. If you have questions, comments, or recommendations about this project, feel free to send email to evan at nixsyspaus dot org. [2007-07-29] I updated the images to correct the web address at the bottom, and removed some extraneous information from the filenames while I was at it. Evan Hall 2007-06-28 -- -- Changelog: A text-only list of charts is available in addition to the page full of images. Both pages are ordered alphabetically. There are 254 names/charts. 2007-05-01 -- For a page full of name charts, see the image directory. More information is forthcoming. 2007-04-18 -- -- Notice: The contents of this page and the name chart images may be distributed freely and unconditionally. If you wish to reproduce the chart images on your web page, please host them locally rather than linking to them here.