The first word cloud tool I used was Voyant. I liked this site because it let me customize how I wanted my word cloud to look down the the word. I like that there were adjustable settings that gave you the chance to decide what you want to emphasize and what you want to be smaller or even not show up at all. This would be a good tool for a company that wanted to use interesting graphics to further a brand or for name recognition. It is colorful and dynamic and lets you include an unlimited amount of text and chooses the most common words but lets you call the shots afterwards. I do wish, however that there were more design customization options. I would like to chose the colors to match the theme I’m working with. For example I might make this particular word cloud grey 50 shades of grey (no pun intended) because black and white alludes to the time period.
I have to say that I had a really hard time getting either of the two programs to work on my computer. They both required me to install additional programs on my laptop that when I tried to, completely froze up everything to the point where I had to manually restart my computer. Twice. And I fought with there programs for almost an hour. So rather than risking breaking my laptop I’m supplementing another word cloud program that I learned because it’s the one we use for our campus’s online alternative magazine, The Little Rebellion, for which I am a contributing editor. It’s quick, simple, and very user friendly. Again there are not many customization tools but it makes a clean rectangular image and you can customize the font with any typeface from the Microsoft Word suite. We use these word clouds as backgrounds for other things–lower the opacity and there ya go.