Evolution of professional language reveals advances in geophysics: researchers enthusiastically describe new methods of surveying, data processing techniques, and objects of their study. Geophysicists publish their cutting-edge research in the proceedings of international conferences to share their achievements with the world. Tracking changes in the professional language allows one to identify trends and current state of science. Here, we explain our text analysis of the last 30 annual conferences organized by the Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG). These conferences are among the largest geophysical gatherings worldwide. We split the 21,864 SEG articles into 52 million words and phrases, and analyze changes in their usage frequency over time. For example, we find that in 2019, the phrase “neural network” was used more often than “field data.” The word “shale” became less commonly used, but the term “unconventional” grew in frequency. An analysis of conference materials and metadata allows one to identify trends in a specific field of knowledge and predict its development in the near future.
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