In this post I present a visualization of all named colors, ranging from the more common to the more obscure, including green, blue, yellow, orchid, lavender, turquoise, acquamarine, azure, etc. etc.
From various sources  I downloaded around 2600 such names, I merged the different lists, and slightly edited the entries to remove duplicates and to make the collection more consistent. Then I trained a SOM (Kohonen map)  with 6000 units, using the open source toolbox  for Matlab. Finally I exported the results with some custom scripts I wrote. This last part was done similarly to the visualization of languages described in my previous post. Otherwise the data was much more reasonable this time than in the previous post: 2600 data points, 3 features (red, green, and blue values) and no missing entries.
The first plot shows the trained SOM map with each hexagonal unit being colored according to its location in the three-dimensional RGB space. The other three maps show only the red, green, and blue values of the units, respectively.
exp_som.png (~6 MB)
Figure 1. SOM map of named colors.
The second plot contains the actual names of the colors and the corresponding hexadecimal RGB values. The goal was to place similar colors near each other as much as possible.
In this project SOM is used to visualize colors, but only a handful of colors are shown.
Some of the colors in the final list I used seem to have been submitted by users at the Colourlovers website.
 Scholarpedia: http://www.scholarpedia.org/article/Kohonen_network