October 12, 2012

After last night’s vice presidential candidates’ debate, The Heritage Foundation generated two word clouds, one for Vice President Joe Biden and the other for Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI).

These word clouds illustrate the top 50 words used by both candidates during the debate. The bigger the word appears on the cloud, the more often it was used by each candidate.

Biden’s remarks:

Ryan’s remarks:

Tell us: what differences do you see in the word clouds?

Comments (2)

Joan Holloway - October 15, 2012

I think they are interesting, but not a serious comparison of the debate. For example, middle class is shown as two words in Ryan’s remarks and both one (hyphenated) word and two words in Biden’s. Since word clouds allow the creator to assign a font size and a color value to each word, the size of the font and the color mean nothing but a personal choice. I don’t see where words like friend, Martha, best, try, putting, inaudible, thing, whether, come, let, well, asked (to name a few), lend anything to this comparison. So this said, my comparison of the two clouds–both biden and Ryan believe in a small government (both are the same font size), but Biden believes in a government deeper in debt because his government’s color value is more red than Ryan’s. Jobs are a bigger, hotter (font and color) issue to Ryan than they are to Biden. Ryan’s cloud indicates Congress is more important (larger font, hotter color) than Biden’s cloud does. That’s how I see it. :-)

QuasiQuirky - October 17, 2012

To me, a mathematician, while it does have an inkling of a fun factor, I judge it chaotic, subjective, and nonsensical.

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