Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Tagxedo...Word Cloud Software

I'm a word cloud junkie. I like word clouds because you get to make art from words. You can use a program like Paint to create a word cloud. Or, if you're lazy like me, you can use a generator. One of my favorite generators is Wordle.

However, a new generator has entered the market: Tagxedo (tag-SEE-doh). Tagxedo, which is in Beta testing at the moment, bills itself as a word cloud with styles. The Tagxedo link above will take you to the gallery where you can see word clouds of people who are easily recognized. With Tagxedo, you can upload an image and turn the image into a word cloud.

I'm just beginning to play around with this new toy but I can already see that if I had an outline of a county, I could add the places where my family lived in the county and have a nifty piece of art to use on a blog.

One word of caution. These pieces of software usually come with terms of use. If you decide to reproduce a tagxedo on something like a book cover, I would recommend writing to the software owners to confirm that you are within the terms and/or get permission to use the piece of art for your project. If your project doesn't involve a charge (that is, you aren't charging for your book), you should be able to use the tagxedo but it must include the following attribution: http://www.tagxedo.com.

I'm sure that as I play with this new toy and learn how to use it well, I'll be writing about the experience. Writing about software is after all what I do. So you can expect to see more on this topic.

P.S. If you find that you're interested in word clouds, click here to visit an educational website with more information on word cloud software.

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