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Resources for the modern journalist. From Loose Wire

Word Clouds

From Wikipedia:

A tag cloud (keyword cloud, or weighted list in visual design) is a visual depiction of user-generated tags, or simply the word content of a site, typically used to describe the content of web sites. Tags are usually single words and are normally listed alphabetically, and the importance of each tag is shown with font size or color.Thus, it is possible to find a tag alphabetically and by popularity. The tags are usually hyperlinks that lead to a collection of items that are associated with a tag. Sometimes, further visual properties are manipulated, such as the font color, intensity, or weight.

Put more simply, they’re a visual cluster of words taken from a document or body of work, the size of each word representing (usually) the frequency with which that word is used in the body of work (incidence). So if a word is used more than another word, it’ll appear bigger. Like this:

Word cloud sample

source: alphaWorks – Word-Cloud Generator

To make a word cloud, use one of the services listed below.

  • Find the text you want to use (either copy it to the clipboard, copy the HTML link, or RSS feed, or document, depending on the service and taste)
  • copy the text or link into the appropriate field
  • hit Enter
  • You’ll probably need to tweak it a few times to get it right. Some word cloud generators work better than others.

    Word Cloud Generators




    Tagxedo – Tag Cloud with Styles

    Tagul – Gorgeous tag clouds

    WordItOut – Transform your text into word clouds!

    Tag Cloud Generator



    Others to play with:

    Twittersheep Enter your twitter username to see a tag cloud from the ‘bios’ of your twitter flock.

    WP-Cumulus tagcloud generator for a WordPress site



    Design tips for building tag clouds

    Understanding Tag Clouds

    Tag Clouds Gallery: Examples and Good Practices

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