Unique Identifiers

I was playing with Twitter search recently, and was curious who at Northwestern uses Twitter.

My first instinct, of course, was to just search for "Northwestern University", but it was quickly apparent that people who attend Northwestern don't actually write "Northwestern". Maybe this is due to the assumed common context of the tweeter and the audience ("grounding"); the reader knows the tweeter is at Northwestern, and since conversations try to maximize bandwidth, what is common knowledge is left unsaid.

The question then becomes: what terms would people at Northwestern, and only people at Northwestern use? That is, what phrases are semantically associated with Northwestern?

There were only two that I could think of:
  • "Dillo Day". It turns out that no other university in the world has a day in honor of armadillos (or whatever the reason NU actually has a Dillo Day). Of course, this only works when Dillo Day recently happened or is going to happen soon
  • Norbucks. This actually makes a lot of sense, since it's a portmanteau of Norris (University center) and Starbucks. By itself, either word is common, but this combination makes it unique to Northwestern.
Can you find any other phrases which are unique to Northwestern?


  1. I'm sure there are random Greek events (Paddy Murphy week, Pi Phi Pie Phight, etc) that are uniquely NU. Like Dillo Day though, they would have had to happen recently, or be coming very soon. NUDM might be a good one. I'd be more likely to stalk by association - who is NBN / NUDM twitter following?

  2. Yeah, I was going to suggest Greek events. Or even locations around Evanston that are frequented by students. You could even try doing a search of buildings around campus, like Kellogg or something.