Posted on Thu 21 October 2010

I've taken a lot of photos and like many online photographers I've gone to some effort to label and tag all my images. Over time though, it gets difficult to uniquely title every picture. To get unstuck, I reached out on twitter to Neil Gaiman and asked for a handful of adjectives I could use to title photos:

Alt Text

This ran out soon enough, and I created a new python library to create madlib-style titles for images, wordspew. Creating a title for an image that has nothing to do with the image itself prompts the viewer to try to link the two, and in a way is an independent artistic expression created randomly by an uncaring, objective computer.

It even comes with a tiny webserver if that's how you like to dish up randomness.


wordspew: a small library to generate random English snippets of phrases. The results are often complete nonsene, but that's the point.


generatePhrases.py:    simple way of retreiving spew from the python console
generatePhrasesWeb.py: simple web server for dishing up wordspew

Word dictionaries for adjectives, adverbs, nouns and verbs were obtained from Ashley Bovan's word lists.


>>> import wordspew
>>> wordspew.getPhrase()
'symbolically sloping anarchic rockery'
>>> wordspew.getPhrase()
'absorbingly scrags run-of-the-mill ubiquitarians'
>>> wordspew.getPhrase()
'three-phase underbidders'
>>> wordspew.getPhrase()
'finest blepharitis'
>>> wordspew.getPhrase()
'the institutionalization was meaningful'