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Stupid Data Tricks: Facebook Names

August 17, 2010 | 0 Minute Read

Like a good data nerd, I downloaded the list of publicly available Facebook names, dumped into text files. I was trying to figure out a neat way to use them. It’s always weird when people have the same first and last names, so I wrote a quick regex to find people with names like “John John” and “Laura Laura.” I used /^([a-z]+) \1$/, but maybe there’s a better one. I think mine left out the middle names.

Apparently there are a lot of people with the same first and last name. 14,495 in my list, to be exact. But that’s out of a 100 million or so (I only did unique names). Here’s the list for anyone who might care. I’m trying to figure out a more useful application for this dataset. Any ideas?