Candidate Clouds

Candidate Debate Tag CloudsJust finished a very cold mile walk (23f/-5c) to the coffee shop where, after warming my hads around a tall decaf, I’m writing about tag clouds.   In looking for examples, I ran across, where they have posted two blog entries that include tag clouds of the presidential debates.  On April 27 they included the democratic contenders, and on May 4, they posted the republicans’.

It’s interesting to compare Clinton’s cloud with those of the other candidates.  She has very few big words, meaning that there are not a lot of words and terms that she uses repeatedly.

What does this say about the candidates?  Is this a useful tool for analyzing and comparing our choices?  Certainly not in its self. 

But what might students learn if they could generate tag clouds for the chapters of their textbooks?

Check out TagCrowd (

10 thoughts on “Candidate Clouds”

  1. These candidate tag clouds are very interesting and valuable for the info they convey as well as the object lesson they can provide. So many folks are still unfamiliar with tagging and folksonomies. Thanks for sharing this.

    Even more interseting than asking students to create or see a tag cloud of their textbook would be tag clouds of their own reflective writings throughout the year and that if their teachers. What a great window into literacy, interests, and knowledge THAT would provide in a digital portfolio!

  2. Very interesting. I like the idea of tag clouds for students’ writing. That could be very interesting. I’ve noticed tag clouds on friends’ blogs tend to skew heavily toward one group of subjects or another–family posts, for example. It could be a valuable window into students’ thoughts, priorities and concerns.

  3. Have you seen the global cloud site that was highlighted at TED? Actually, there are a few that are striking. Jonathan Harris has been involved in a few projects that ‘cloudify’ Internet thoughts. One is We Feel Fine (, where the emotions of the world’s bloggers are arranged in many unique ways. The other uses cloud images of current events in the form of constellations (

    More on Jonathan (Isn’t it interesting in light of constellations, that he has the same name as the actor who played Dr. Smith on Lost in Space):

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