Fairly Random

A fairly random text generator

© 2008-2012 Thijs van Gerwen
14-JAN-2012
Due to an error with the domain name we’ve been offline for a good month! Sorry for any inconvenience!
Happy randomizing for 2012!

Please note that this tool, the info here and the interface are in an early construction stage. I just put it online so you can start playing around with it while it is not yet feature-complete and polished.
Thank you and have fun!
What does this do exactly?
The title phrase “fairly random text” could be taken, by some, as a strong indicator that this does, in fact, produce fairly random text, but for the curious masses, here is the gist of it!
In short...
The Fairly Random text generator generates realistic seeming random text from any given source text. To do this it analyzes a source text that you provide. It measures overall word length and frequency, and lets you review the individual words of the original text. It also immediately creates a random text based on your source text. If you want, you can then use the various options to tell the text generator which of the words to use (or not to use) and what the resulting text should look like (in terms of sentences, paragraphs, headers et cetera).

In other words, your input and settings determine the flavor of the output, which is, as such, a rewrite of your source text into not really random text.

Dummy text, fake text, placeholder text... why make it look nice?
While random text is mostly intended to just fill up the blank spaces, for many practical purposes you essentially want the look and feel of the dummy text you are going to use to be as close as possible to the real content that will eventually replace it. Considering that different language, writing style and substance of text result in an endless variety of different word combinations and visual impressions that a piece of text can have and make, it is always a plus to have it use the right kind of words and look like the final product as much as possible. Whether you are working in the technical, lifestyle, news or fantasy business, you will always impress and fascinate by having your concept pieces look and feel like they are the real technical, lifestyle, news or fantasy deal... to name but a few examples.

On a sidenote...
You might be surprised how much mood or athmosphere even a totally random text can carry, while a fairly random text does this better ofcourse ;-). Granted, when you really get down to reading it, there won't be much meaningful coherence in any of it, but... regardless of the fact that random text makes no real sense, it does automatically get your mind working. Your brain will in fact try hard to understand it anyway, because out of habit it assumes that words in a text should mean something, or at least anything but nothing! You see, the brain launches itself into ‘I-must-understand-this’ mode when confronted with random text, trying every possible way in which it could still extract some sensible meaning from those random words, much like trying to solve a puzzle. Just try it. Reading random text for a few minutes, word for word, is very tiring. On the upside, reading a little bit, or just skimming over a random text like most people will do, makes your mind strongly touch upon a certain global idea of “subject matter” without its focus getting diverted by any actual meaningful details, while what the random text does do is automatically fill the readers mind with questions at the same time. The more your strongly your source text is written on a specific subject and uses a specific group of words, the stronger this effect will be. And this is exactly what you want your Fairly Random text to accomplish: it is there to provide a general mood, to hook interest and to look like the real thing.
Putting the Fairly Random text generator to some good use
While generating all kinds of random text is often fun in itself, here are a few examples of how to put the fairly random text generator to productive use:
For designers...
Having your dummy text support your design content-wise looks way more convincing than just some unrelated, repetitive placeholder text that is not even in the right language and which just “looks” wrong, but those days are now forever gone! The Fairly Random text generator happily sets to work with anything you want that has the right kind of words and is in the right language! Just copy a piece about gardening, some recipes, a game review, notes from a business meeting, a fantasy story, or anything... you name it. Set some options, copy the result and start working with adequate and realistic looking fake text.
For writers...
Analyze your (or someone else’s) writing style! Input a story and see a clean overview of which words are used and how often they are used. Did you like something you read? Just input it here to get a quick idea of which words the writer relies on to create a certain mood or context, see if a certain text tends toward long or short general word usage and see how rich, or boring, a text is in use of unique words. Or just feed the text generator a themed word set, let it destroy a beautiful poem or have it rewrite the plans for your honeymoon... and then read the result for inspiration and adventure ;-).


Source material

- The source text does not have to be cleanly formatted, in fact you can just paste trash and see what happens. (For instance when you use select-all to get all text from a web page in one go.)
- Use the options for global tuning of the source text. Changes to options will be reflected in the word pool overview below, the original text you entered will not change.
Paste text here:
 Strip numbers  Strip alphanumeric hybrids  Strip url's  Respect fully capitalized words (does not include accented characters) Process source text >>