(Source: barackobama, via spotastic)
I’m doing an experiment. If you have Twitter, would you please RT this tweet? https://twitter.com/robdelaney/status/265641093616504832
This is a post about the election, because there are not many of those on the Internet right now.
The post presents some word clouds, or “wordles”, I made of President Obama and Gov. Romney’s respective Democratic and Republican National Convention Speeches. I chose these speeches because they are remarks made by each candidate to his constituents (while they may not be the only target audiences, they may be among the most important). What does each person say to his own “team”?
I created the graphics with the easy-to-use site wordle.net. I downloaded transcripts of each candidate’s speech from NPR.org (Obama and Romney). The wordle for Mr. Romney represents a completely unedited transcript. For Mr. Obama, I deleted all instances of audience participation (e.g., chants of “USA USA USA” and “FOUR MORE YEARS”. What are we, animals?! Just kidding, I totally would have chanted). I also deleted many of Obama’s opening “thank you, thank you”s. I did not have to do this for Romney because his transcript did not contain any of these things. I don’t know whether this is because there was no audience participation or if NPR just didn’t include them.
I originally created the wordles in red and blue, but for comparability, I present them below in the same color scheme. (The scheme is called “Milk Paint”, and I think we can all agree that sounds disgusting.)
The figures below represent the words used by each candidate in his speech. Note: the word clouds do not contain common English words like “of”, “and”, or “the”. (The removal of these words is a function I chose in Wordle; I do not know exactly what their list of frequent words is, but my impression is that linguists are largely agreed on the majority of words in this group.)
The larger the word, the more frequently it was used. Color and orientation do not matter (that’s a forward-sounding sentence if I’ve ever heard one!).
Figure 1: President Obama’s DNC Speech (total length: 39:03)
Figure 2: Governor Romney’s RNC Speech (37:41)
A Few Unscientific Observations
My Sister Paid Progressive Insurance to Defend Her Killer In Court
I’ve been sending out some impertinent tweets about Progressive Insurance lately, but I haven’t explained how they pissed me off. So I will do that here as succinctly as possible. There’s a general understanding that says, “insurance companies— oh they’re awful,” but since Progressive turned their shit hose on my late sister and my parents, I’ve learned some things that really surprised me.
I’ll try to cleave to the facts. On June 19, 2010, my sister was driving in Baltimore when her car was struck by another car and she was killed. The other driver had run a red light and hit my sister as she crossed the intersection on the green light.
masterpiece, volume 3: Epilogue.
masterpiece, volume 2.
my life’s masterpiece, volume 1.
snapshot of life as a tooth
untitled (rabbit love)
a correct balloon
(Author’s note: Do YOU know what an isotope looks like?)
rabbit and caribou 2
ten points to anyone who guesses the identity of our beloved returning character!
explorer rabbits and caribou