[Promotion] Google Trends on GNOME and KDE

John Williams johnfrombluff at gmail.com
Tue Apr 24 16:52:15 PDT 2007

On Tue, 2007-04-24 at 23:51 +0200, Thilo Pfennig wrote:
> Hi, I am not a statician and not a marketing expert

Hi Thilo.  I am both a statistician and a marketing "expert" (I teach
marketing research and strategy) so I will comment.  However, I hope you
are aware that another statistician or marketer may have entirely
different interpretations that mine ;-)

> , but if I look at this Google Trend:
> http://www.google.com/trends?q=GNOME%2CKDE&ctab=0&geo=all&date=all
> ... something is eye-catching. These two curves from the search volume
> look just too much related to each other as it could be a
> coincidence!? 
Probably not, although it is possible. 

> There were some bigger peaks in the past but not now
Maybe this says something about the quality of the software and
documentation?  In the past people needed to turn to the net for help,
and not so much now (?)

> Maybe somebody who is better at statistics could say something more
> about it. Can we learn something from this? How does this come?
Your speculation is as good as mine.  This is not really a statistical
question.  If I has the actual data (instead of the graph) I could
formally test the relationship between the search patterns.  But this
would not tell us WHY they were related.

> I think maybe it means that everything GNOME or KDE does is also
> reflected at the other desktop?
Perhaps, but other explanations are equally plausible.  For example, it
appears that they both have roughly equal market share, and the time
period were people search for them coincide.  This would imply that they
are searching that is not specific to their desktop, but they need
desktop-specific instructions on how to do it.  Installing a proprietary
MP3 codec, for example.

The first thing to establish, however, is how Google normalised the
data.  This will impact any interpretation we may have.

> You dont get this with other free software project like if you put two
> desktop distributions like Fedora and Ubuntu in:
> http://www.google.com/trends?q=GNOME%2CKDE%2CFedora%2CUbuntu&ctab=0&geo=all&date=all
Simply reflects the phenomenal rise of Ubuntu.  But remember it comes in
both GNOME and KDE versions.

> What that could mean is though KDE got some more news volume in 2007
> both are generally getting the same level of attention by the
> worldwide public. 
I would agree there.

HTH  (but it probably doesn't ;-)


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