The first year of UPD

Deze pagina in het Nederlands

NOTE: David Stone discovered that he used the inflicted form "UPDs" before 7 Nov 2001, and wrote about it in his blog on 4 January 2006. I may redo this page at some point in time.

David Stone from NY is a regular poster in the newsgroup On 7 Nov 2001, in a thread titled "Subject: 18mi., 92mins, 1 Coker" he coined the acronym UPD for "UnPlanned Dismount" when he wrote: 

And I have never had a bad spill, tho I have had a few unplanned dismounts (UPDs) at 15mph. 

Little could David know that this would become such a commonplace TLA - or could he? (Note that TLA stands for Three Letter Acronym, or Three Letter Abbreviation for the purists.) 

To mark the occasion of the first anniversary of the term UPD, I've done a little statistics exercise. In the picture you see the percentage of posts to rsu that contain UPD through its first year. The trendline (proprietary algorithm) suggests that the acceptance of this term is still on the increase. Where will this end? 

Disclaimers and how-I-did-it are at the bottom of the page. 

I have taken the liberty of submitting UPD for inclusion in the database of It appears that UPD has (at least) six other meanings...

I've relied on Google Groups to give me for each month the total number of posts in rsu, and the number of posts in which UPD occurs. 

In addition to the clean form UPD which featured in 385 posts, it occurs on rsu in inflected forms (which I take as a sign of acceptance BTW). Possible derivations of UPD include:
UPDs (occurs in 106 posts in the whole year)
UPD's (59)
UPD'd (7)
UPD'ing (6)
UPDing (5)
UPDed (5)
UPDd (4)
UPD'ed (2)
UPDes (0)
UPD'es (0)
The posts in which these derivations occur are partly overlapping with the posts in which the clean form UPD occurs. Unfortunately, Google Groups doesn't permit wildcard searches, so I've chosen to restrict my statistics to UPD per se.

The first occurrence of UPD happened on Nov 7, 2001, according to my saved newsreader posts. For determining the monthly number of occurrences I have relied on the datestamp of Google Groups, which is occasionally different (probably a time zone thing).

Was David the first to use the term really? Well, the post quoted above was the first occurrence on Usenet of UPD in this unicycling meaning, and AFAIK there was no earlier appearance on the www. But it may have been used off-line before that - who's gonna prove it?

Back to Unicycling statistics.