Saturday, 31 October 2009

Wordle

Now this is pretty cool ...


It's a kind-of cloud generated from the content of Strange News using an online Java package called Wordle. I particularly like that it displays "Arse" prominently - didn't notice that I'd used it that much. Although I've fed it this blog, it can be fed any large block of text. Here's what happens when you give it the entire text of Moby-Dick (for APM, of course) ...


Marvellous. Given that it identifies major themes in the text it's fed (cf. "Whale" above), perhaps it's a quick way to generate a short-hand summary of a technical paper or long newspaper article? :-)

3 comments:

Anne Gearhart said...

I might argue that that sort of summary would be useful only if you read (and vaguely remembered) the thing you were using this tool to summarize. As just a list of weighted words, I could come up with all varieties of different interpretations. Neat, though!

Anne Gearhart said...

Just tried it with one of my journals, and it didn't seem like a good representative of what I write or think about. I tried it for Jedidiah (remember him?) and it seemed to fit better...

Plumbago said...

Yes, I think you're right - it's a bit more hit and miss than I suggested. It didn't do an especially good job on my blog either. I suspect that it only looked at a few recent posts, and since my last ones have been a bit random, it's not very representative (maybe Jedidiah, who I remember, writes a more consistent blog). Anyway, I think I was too buoyed up by my early success with Moby-Dick. :-)