Amusing and Fun

Word Clouds

Cloud computing is all the rage these days, but what about clouds of words?

Wordle is a site that allows you to enter (or copy & paste or redirect RSS feed) text into a word cloud generator.  You can have lots of fun with this by feeding in your last performance review for example.

This word cloud was generated using the text in the About page for this blog.

To use Wordle, click on the create button, feed in your text and press go.  Wordle uses a Java applet on your computer so that your text is processed locally.  Nothing gets sent back to the author’s site.

Generated using the text in the About page for this blog.

Notice that if you run Wordle multiple times on the same text, it will change the layout randomly.  This will happen when you click any of the Randomize, Layout, Font, or Colour buttons for example.  If you right click on a word in the resulting display you can remove it.

To save your result, you can print it (e.g. to PDF), post it to the gallery and then download it, or you can just take a screenshot of it.  If you want a larger screenshot, you can also pop the Java display out into its own resizeable page.

Wordle basically works by examining the frequency that words occur in your text and increasing the visual prominence of that word based on its frequency.  It filters out some common “stop words” and then randomizes the colour and style of the layout.

If you get really keen you can try the advanced Wordle, which allows you to manually enter weights or colours, and you can follow along in the author’s blog or join the Wordle User Group.

Other Fun Sites

Other fun sites that are meant to be amusing are:

If any of these links are broken, please post a comment to this page.

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