Can a Name Predict a Person’s Profession?

alex atkins bookshelf cultureWhen parents choose a name for their child, it is one of the most important decisions they will make. A person’s name, of course, will shape their identity and influence their self-esteem and perception by others. Should it honor a family member? Should the name reflect the child’s race? What qualities does the name evoke?  Is the name popular, unique, or unusual? Is it easily spelled and pronounced? What sort of nicknames will the name inspire?

Thankfully, the marketplace offer dozens of baby-naming books and apps — all claiming to be the ultimate naming guide. But Nametrix (or “Babies Need Names”), an app developed by Verdant Labs in 2012, places a new spin on naming a baby. It analyzes data to suggest that a name can predict, with some degree of accuracy, a person’s future profession and political party affiliation. Specifically, they state that “People with [certain] names are more likely than others to have [certain] professions.”

Nametrix’s developer, Mark Edmond, explains how the app archives this: “This is all based on proportional frequencies of names in professions, etc. (not just overly simplistic raw counts). I pulled 550,000 people from Wikipedia (all that had parse-able profession data) and 1.3 million people from the FEC’s campaign contribution database. The top profession for a given name is the one in which the name is associated with the highest percentage of people in that profession (subject to some minimums for statistical relevance).  It uses the same kind of math for political party, ranked names within professions, and U.S. regional popularity.

The folks at verdantlabs then created a very helpful and colorful naming infographic to assist parents to choose that “special” name that will help guide their newborn toward their destiny. Here are some highlights:

POET NAMES
Anne, Celia, Dorothy, Edmund, Edgar, Hannah

LAWYER NAMES
Augustus, Cecily, Marshal, Norton, Sanford, William

FARMER NAMES
Darin, Delbert, Suane, Elwood, Marlin, Mavis

POLICE OFFICER NAMES
Kevin, Kim, Louis, Raymond, Timothy, Wayne

VENTURE CAPITALIST NAMES
Alexander, Doug, Guy, Joanna, Nicholas, Shawn

SONG WRITER NAMES
Benny, Billy, Mick, Ritchie, Sonny, Stevie

SOCIAL WORKER NAMES
Constance, Jeannette, Marsha, Penelope, Stella, Vivian

ELECTRICAL ENGINEER NAMES
Alfred, Bernard, Charles, Edwin, Eugene, Harvey

ACCOUNTANT NAMES
Adele, Charmaine, Kurtis, Maribel, Mindy, Mitzi

CAR SALESMAN NAMES
Allen, Bob, Clay, Larry, Pete, Travis

GRAPHIC DESIGNER NAMES
Alison, Diana, Jan, Jessica, Kurt, Vanessa

SURGEON NAMES
Barrett, Harris, Holly, Jefferson, Sanford, Sherwin

FOOTBALL COACH NAMES
Bill, Dan, Jim, Mike, Rich, Steve

Read related posts: What Famous Authors Named Their Pets
Real Names of Famous Singers
Funniest Town Names in America
Unusual Town Names in America
How Famous Singers Got Their Names
How Rock Bands Got Their Names

Origins of the Beatles Name
Most Common Nicknames for Shakespeare

Unusual Color Names

 

For further reading: http://freakonomics.com/2013/04/10/an-app-for-names/
http://verdantlabs.com/professions/
http://verdantlabs.com/nametrix/

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