my favorite lists
It’s hard to get more democratic than an interesting ranking of real data.
o Google Zeitgeist – A wholly important list summarizing the most recent week of searches. They are the top ideas currently circulating, which is sort of a heady concept. John Battelle calls it “the Database of Intentions.”
o Billboard’s Hot Ringtones – This week, Koji Kondo’s “Super Mario Brothers Theme” remains in the top five after 74 weeks on the charts. Harry Mancini’s “Pink Panther Theme” isn’t too far behind. Go meme-pop, go!
o Most emailed stories from the New York Times and USA Today – The most emailed stories aren’t the most important. That is, they’re not usually proper news, about politics or the weather or anything. Rather, they’re stories that grow legs because (like the Google Zeitgeist) they speak to some idea circulating subliminally. It seems as if there is no crossover between the Times and USA Today.
o OCLC’s Top 1000 library books – The Online Computer Library Center compiled this list from the catalogues of over 53,000 libraries around the world. For all the talk I heard about the “demise of the canon” during four years of college English classes, it’s funny to see the canon itself spelled out in relatively hard numbers. It’s also funny to note that #15 — nestled between The Night Before Christmas and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer — is Garfield at Large. Bill Watterson’s eponymous Calvin and Hobbes collection hits at #77 (with a bullet!) (BOMP!). Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan sits at #381. The writings of John Calvin do not chart. (Thanks, Kottke)
Looks like democratic lists are on John Battelle’s mind, too. Here he fantasticates about TVRank.