Lenny Domnitser’s

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This is a static archive of the domnit.org blog,
which Lenny Domnitser wrote between 2006 and 2009.

Gorilla: How Many Hundred Pounds?

Everyone knows it. It’s the 800-pound gorilla of clichés. Or is it 500 pounds? Urban Dictionary has an entry for 800-pound gorilla but not 500-pound gorilla, and 800 is the expression I’ve heard most. But actual worldwide usage can be surprising.

I queried Google, and 500-pound has 28% higher usage than 800-pound, with about 310,000 results compared to about 242,000. Gorilla usage by pounds exhibits a clear double-hump pattern, with 500 and 800 above all the rest, then usage dropping to tens of thousands for 400, 600, 900, and 1,000, and insignificant usage for other values.

Bar graph shows number of results per pounds for pounds from 100 to 1,600 by 100s. Results are 853; 2,060; 1,550; 16,400; 310,000; 18,500; 1,300; 242,000; 28,400; 10,500; 12; 357; 5; 6; 366; 124

Here is the same data on a logarithmic scale, to better see the order of results:

Graph shows same data as above on a logarithmic scale

Query technique

Google search X lb gorilla” OR “X pound gorilla”. Today’s data: 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700, 800, 900, 1,000, 1,100, 1,200, 1,300, 1,400, 1,500, 1,600.

Scaling up

Some people use thousands instead of hundreds, but 8,000 (3,100 results) is more popular than 5,000 (578 results). Several other pound values get thousands of results, but I haven’t seen any others with over 10,000 results.

If you switch to words instead of numerals, you can find plenty of million and billion pound gorillas, but they seem to be a less pure use of the expression. Rather than just identify the biggest player in some field, the large-number usage may try to show actual scale or value. For example, Myspace was identified in 2006 as a 27.4-billion-pound gorilla and the United States’ debt is a 9-trillion-pound gorilla.

Music Summer

Since I was super-excited for new full-lengths from Mates of State, Tilly and the Wall, and My Morning Jacket, I suppose I’ll post reactions now that I’ve listened to all of them a while.

Re-Arrange Us. Every Mates of State album has taken getting used to for me, but eventually found its place in my music↔mood map. That’s not to say they’re equal, and this one is somewhat looser than Mates’ best. Every song on Re-Arrange Us has been stuck in my head at some point, but I just miss the trademark organ and joy. Re-Arrange Us is darker, with guitar/piano displacing the organ, and with Kori’s vocals much more prominent.

O comes out 6/17, but I’m a sucker and got the early release + art print pre-order. Tilly and the Wall keep on tapping for their unique percussion, but for this third album, as with their second, they use more drums and electronics. I’m infinitely grateful to CSS for touring with Tilly, because I don’t think they would have made a song like Pot Kettle Black otherwise. Very fun listening.

Evil Urges. My Morning Jacket managed to get more pop-rock and more weird at the same time. Less jams without sacrificing the sweet sweet guitar, and Jim James is really pushing himself on vocals. The word “interweb” in a southern twang is the second strangest thing. The first is Highly Suspicious. Also, it’s epic and dreamy as expected from MMJ.

The Superiority of Cardboard CD Cases to Jewel Cases

Way better experience.

HOWTO Disable the Verizon FiOS Domain Name Ad Redirect

Verizon FiOS annoyingly redirects non-existent domain names to ads. You can opt out, but it’s hard, and their own instructions are wrong. I wrote HOWTO Disable the Verizon FiOS Domain Name Ad Redirect to offer a clear (still too complicated) solution.

Even with opt out available, the service still scuzzy, and Verisign got ripped to shreds when they tried to pull this kind of stunt for all of .com and .net.

Anyway, the HOWTO.