Quick Bits

Most of the time I have a day job and just hack together prototypes of my own ideas over a weekend. That’s how Robot Choir and Haiku Detector got started. Both of those have had much more development in subsequent weekends, and the latter is no longer a hacky prototype. Here are a few weekend apps that I haven’t developed further:

Synaesthetist — an app to simulate grapheme-colour synaesthesia (or bring it into reality, for those who already experience it) and investigate whether it can be used to learn novel scripts. This one is available for download.

Nonsense Poet — an app which, given a list of words and their rhymes and syllable counts, will arrange them into a lines with a given length and rhyme scheme. It does not attempt to make coherent sentences — I wrote this to create a French version of Tom Lehrer’s song ‘The Elements‘, which simply lists the chemical elements to a possibly recognisable tune. It has not yet been released; if it ever is, it will be able to calculate rhymes and syllable counts by itself, at least for English words, using the technology behind Haiku Detector and Rhyme Science.

Prosodometer — an app which measures the perceived speed of prose, based on frequency of stressed syllables and the use of certain sounds. I wrote this while participating in a writing course in which I had to edit stories while paying attention to perceived speed based on the sounds used. This has not been released, but it may appear as part of a suite of related tools.