Friday, June 13, 2008

I Have Seen the Best Minds of My Generator . . .

I'm fascinated with generators and what they say about the promises and limitations of participatory culture. I write about them in the Virtualpolitik book, for which I interviewed Christopher Soghoian, "The Northwest Boarding Pass Generator Guy," and have a paper in the ACM library on them as well, "Assembly Lines: Web Generators as Hypertexts."
So, of course I have to point out the existence of the Obama Quote Generator, which asks the user for vague concepts and plural nouns and for him or her to push "Make Plattitude!" to produce a paragraph of generalizations that can then be repurposed into three different versions of the excerpt from a stump speech with the click of some more buttons below. (Click screenshots to enlarge.)

Right now there's no comparable McCain quote generator, but since a Republican is still in office, you can check out the Bush Quote Generator in the interest of equal time. Refresh this page for a new Bushism.

Speaking as a would-be grammarian, I just wish that their online script fun would at least properly use "quotation" as a noun and "quote" as the verb.

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