This weekend we’re going to the Wordle site.
Wordle is a site with a java applet that creates pretty “word clouds” from text. I’ve copied and pasted a number of my stories, for instance. You can also enter a Web site or blog URL, and I’ve done that as well.
The program sifts through the entered words–it can take a minute or two if you input many words or a whole blog or Web site–and assembles a selection of them, kindly discarding “the,” “a,” and other oft-used utilitarian words. Words that are used frequently are larger than those used infrequently.
It makes for a nifty picture and is even educational. You can see what words you’re using most, perhaps over-using, and if you’re interested in keywords, you can see if you’re using them enough.
There are tools to let you play with the font, color, and arrangement of text. What I haven’t figured out is how to best capture the images so that I might be able to do something with them. I’m working on it. There are explanations and suggestions on the site. The easiest thing to do is print what you create, but as someone who tries hard to reduce paper consumption, I want to learn how to capture them electronically. If you figure it out, help!
Note: I saved this image to the Wordle Gallery. That means it’s available to anyone on the Internet. That’s fine with me in this case. I wanted to show you an example, and there’s nothing personal in it. It is, however, the only image I’ve saved to the gallery.
Does anyone else see possibilities for needlework here?