JC and SA looked at Word Clouds as a way to generate clouds of words that commonly used words within a text e.g. words being used by students in essays or for poetry. This could be used to show words that they are overusing or underusing. Some Word clouds that we looked at included:
We chose not to explore Wordle as we wanted to see what else was available.
Looking at Wordsift we discovered that by copying and pasting an essay into the text box, a word cloud was generated with most commonly used words appearing in a bigger font. Then what was also generated were examples of key words in sentences, visual images connected to these words and a visual thesaurus.
Looking at Tagcloud, we found that it generated words in a similar way, but it also had a feature which would mean that we could edit the content as we needed.
Word Mosaic was good for generating key words. Words can be arranged to a shape. Not particularly useful for large pieces of texts such as essays but could be good for poetry or presenting subject vocabulary in an interesting way. It can make some really amazing displays of words with a theme e.g. vocabulary attached to war in the shape of a skull. However, there is a limited choice of shapes…skull, heart, stick man, music, water droplets and stars. Here’s an example of some key words from History:
Looking at Yippy Cloud, it can generate a few simple words into a cloud but had a lot of limitations and couldn’t handle a large amount of text or do something that another word cloud generator could do.
Looking at Tagxedo, it is able to generate word clouds from news articles, websites and links e.g. Twitter. Very stylish. There is also a way to embed the material generated onto Moodle. 101 ways http://blog.tagxedo.com/101-ways-to-use-tagxedo-completed
In the time we spent looking at these Word Clouds, we found Tagxedo to be the most interesting to explore and use. Scott pasted the text of an essay written by his students on the causes of WW2 – Tagxedo processed the 1,000 word essay, he set the shape and colour settings, and created this cloud: