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Researchers Analyze Search Trends, Make Correlations with Economic Conditions

A recent analysis of search trends finds that users whose searches are future-related live in nations where there is a higher per capita GDP. The researchers used Google Trends, comparing the number of searches conducted for calendar years past to those for calendar years to come, and found that those in nations with higher GDPs tend to search more about the year to come than the one past, while those in nations with lower GDPs tend to search about the year past; they referred to this ratio as a “future orientation index.” The UK had a $36,421 per capita GDP in 2010, for example, while Russia ($8,870) had a future orientation index favoring the past. This year to date Canada has had the greatest number of searches for “2013” followed by the US and Japan. The results have been published in Nature’s Scientific Reports. (Ars Technica)(Nature -- Scientific Reports)

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