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Linux and sex battle it out in Utah

Why do Utah residents care so much about Linux? Perhaps it's due to Novell's presence. Perhaps they just know enough about sex already.

Correction at 8:00 a.m. PDT: As a reader pointed out, Red Hat's R&D center is in Westford, Mass.

Even though the data is apparently a bit screwy, I was still really proud to see Utah emerge as the top state for "Linux" searches on Google.

The data also shows that Cubans prefer "Linux" to "sex," which is almost certainly not true, but I think there may actually be something to Utah's strong affinity for Linux, at least as it relates to searches for "sex" on Google.

In Utah, we already know about sex, so we don't have to spend a lot of time searching for it. I have four kids. I should probably be searching for "birth control" before I search for "sex." :-)

With many people getting married in their early 20s, especially in Mormon-filled Utah County, we even know where to find it. Just look at how a city like Provo (comparatively many Mormons) fares compared with Salt Lake City (comparatively few Mormons).

Provo is the place for "Linux." Salt Lake City? It still wants "sex."

But why would Utah have a much stronger interest in Linux than every other state? The article I cited above suggests that it's due to Novell's presence in the state, and that may be, especially in Provo, where Novell has an R&D center. But I would then expect much the same of Raleigh, N.C., where Red Hat is based. Nope. "Sex" is still king in Raleigh.

Only if you go north to Massachusetts does Red Hat's affection for Linux over sex show through.

In fact, if you look at the data, Westford (where Red Hat's R&D center is located) shows an overriding concern with Linux, while Waltham (where Novell is based) splits its time between sex and Linux.

Humorously, if you add "Microsoft" to the mix, Red Hat Westford cares more about Microsoft than Linux, but only by a small margin, while Waltham? Let's just say it's seriously got Microsoft on the mind. :-)

So what does it all mean? Absolutely nothing. But it's still great to claim Utah as the home of Linux in the United States. We'll take the honor. It's a nice diversion from that other search term.