It's good to be
the Kinga Micklethwait. A rose by any other name may smell as sweet, but a new study of unusual surnames offers some depressing insights into the lingering impact of class on social mobility.
World Names Profiler is a pretty amazing Flash tool, that allows you to see where other people with your last name are distributed across the world, in frequency per million, right down to the city and regional level. Fun to pair with the NameVoyager.
"My name is John Johnson, I come from Wisconsin..." Find out the historical distribution of your last name throughout the U.S. (This will not, alas, be useful for Mr. Johnson, or the Smiths, Joneses, Williamses, and Browns of the world.) Brits, we haven't forgotten you! Of course, if you're doing genealogical research, you can turn to specific resources, like the US Census or the massive Familysearch.
A rather interesting article on how scientists how found that people with the same surname usually share some common DNA. This could soon be used to track down the original founder of your last name.