Sep 082012
 

How can you tell I am bored? Creating WORDLES on a Saturday night, might just win me the geek of the year award but I don’t care. I figure I am breaking new ground here, analyzing the words of Barak Obama & Mitt Romney.

I know, I know… I am a sad sad little man.

Would it help if I told you I am enjoying a nice Shiraz while I am writing this?

For those who don’t know what a WORDLE is, it is simply a collage of words, displayed in a graphically pleasing if not interesting way. They were all the rage in teaching circles a couple of years back, you couldn’t walk down the hall without some teacher showing you their WORDLE. “Look! Does’t my Wordle Look GREAT?!”  I generally would avoid eye contact, pretend I was deep in thought and keep on walking.

Fortunately WORDLE mania has passed but they do serve a pretty cool function when you have to analyse the text of a short story, poem or in this case a speech.

All you have to do is go to Wordle.com, click on Create and then paste your text into the text box provided. When you hit the generate button, the website performs some wacky internet magic and spits out your WORDLE. IF you take a look at the WORDLES below, you can see the words are all different sizes and those sizes are dependant on the number of times a word is used within the text. If you look at the Obama’s and Romney’s Speech WORDLES, you can see just how much certain words were emphasized in their respective speeches.

For example: Romney used AMERICA more than any other word  in his speech because it is really BIG, so someone who looks at his WORDLE might assume that he was talking to a bunch of people who weren’t sure where they were? Conversely, the smallest words are the ones used the least and even that could mean something, like in Obama’s speech. The words Schools and Teachers are really small, so it might be a sign that if you are considering being a teacher in the US of A… RUN! To Finland, where their word for education “koulutus” is really big in their head of state speeches.

The WORDLE is a really cool tool for interpreting text. Sure you can read all sorts of things into them but then again, there is a TON of enlightenment that lies within.

Now if you will excuse me, a second glass of Shiraz awaits.

Cheers!

 

Obama's SpeechRomney's Speech
Obama's SpeechRomney's Speech

UPDATE

Was just informed that the New York Times did a similar thing on the Words Being Used at the Republican and Democratic Conventions