Web 2.0 Wednesday: Word Clouds


Well, it’s not Wednesday, but better late than never???

I am hoping to post some Web 2.0 tools that might be of interest for use in the classroom on Wednesdays. I thought I would start off gently – with something many people are familiar with: Word Clouds.

There are three main Word Cloud creators available:

wordle  tagxedo  tagul

Wordle is the original word cloud creator.  It allows the user to create clouds that are customized.  The customization is seen in the final display of the cloud:  the text with the most repeats is the largest word in the cloud; the other words vary in size depending on the frequency of their use. The user may choose from different preset colour themes

**Note: Wordle requires Java to run – Java is no longer supported by the Chrome Browser.

Tagxedo built upon the word cloud idea introduced by Wordle and added shapes that the words could be formed into.  It offers a variety of “Respins” – colour, theme, font, orientation, layout, and shape.  The version that appears on the website is free, but there is a Pro version available for purchase that allows you to upload your own shape images.  You can print, share, or save your Tagxedo word art.

**Note: Tagxedo requires  Silverlight to run – Silverlight is no longer supported by the Chrome Browser.

Tagul continues the word art experience of Tagxedo, but allows the user to have more control over the final outcome. You will need to create a free account to use Tagul.   You can import a word list, set the size of each individual word and decide if you want it to be repeated or not.  There is a nice variety of shapes available to choose from, or you may upload a shape of your choice – preferably one that you have the copyright to use 🙂  The user can change the font, layout, colour, and add animation.  You will be able to download, share, save, or print your word art.  Saved word art is accessible through your account until you delete it. Tagul is free for personal, non-commercial use.  They do have purchase plans for those wishing to use it for commercial reasons or wish to have High Quality (HQ) print outs.  Tagul was usable on Chrome, IE,  and Safari.