I just discovered a new tag cloud creator (or word-picture tool) – Tagxedo. This is a free online application that allows you to make word pictures (or clouds) where the most oft-used words appear largest. This is a good way to get a visual “feel” for a particular text chunk, document, or web site.
Tagxedo is similar to Wordle, but much more powerful with many additional capabilities. First off, as you roll over the online Tagxedo with your mouse, the words come to the front and you can make them live links. You can also spin your cloud, choose different themes (many available), select different colors & fonts, and constrain the word-picture by shapes (hearts, ovals, circles). The cloud to the right (made up of my blog’s contents), is made from the same words as the cloud at the top of the page – this time in the shape of a flower. You can structure it so that you skip words (removing unimportant words, like “the”). Apparently, you can also use photos to create the shapes – like this one of Abe Lincoln. I haven’t tried that yet, but it certainly presents some interesting possibilities. Once you’re created your Tagxedo cloud, you can save it as an image – in both jpg and png formats – at a range of resolutions. What fun.