“Kenosha Kid (@YouNeverDidThe)” by Darius Kazemi

This bot is “brute-forcing an episode from [Thomas Pynchon’s novel] Gravity’s Rainbow” by tweeting the words “you never did the Kenosha kid” with different punctuation every two hours. The bot description links to a Language Log entry that explains the episode– basically about a man who, under the effects of sodium amytal, goes on “an … Read more

“@Darius_at_GDC” by Darius Kazemi

This bot is a stand-in for Kazemi at the Game Developer’s Conference happening at the time of this posting in San Francisco, because he will not be able to attend for the first time in 10 years. So instead of pining away on Twitter as #GDC tweets flood his stream, he created a bot so … Read more

“Rapbot” by Darius Kazemi

This poetry generator uses the Wordnik library’s recent rhyming functionality as dataset suitable for creating rhyming couplets in the ’80s freestyle rap tradition. Examining the source code reveals that the generating algorithm method is simple, but it’s nuanced enough to produce grammatical lines in that tradition. Kazemi wrote 57 line templates each of which was … Read more

“Metaphor-a-Minute!” by Darius Kazemi

This Twitter bot generates a metaphor every two minutes (in spite of its name, since Twitter places limits on automated posting), and it is more than sufficient. The constraint provides a little breathing room to consider the metaphor before facing a new one. How does one approach this steady stream of conceptually challenging metaphors? According … Read more

“Latour Swag” by Darius Kazemi

This Twitter bot produces a mashup of the “Bruno Latourbot” and original tweets that use the #swag hashtag. Kazemi describes the selection algorithm in detail in this excerpt from his blog posting about the creation of this bot. Basically how it works is I get the last 100 Twitter search results for “#swag” that also … Read more

“Snowclone-a-Minute (@snowcloneminute)” by Bradley Momberger and “Pizza Clones (@pizzaclones)” by Allison Parrish

These two bots are based on the concept of snowclones, which are a linguistic phenomenon best described by Erin O’Connor in her wonderful blog and resource “The Snowclones Database.” A snowclone is a particular kind of cliche, popularly originated by Geoff Pullum. The name comes from Dr. Pullum’s much-maligned “If Eskimos have N words for … Read more

Juxtaposition Bots: @TwoHeadlines, @oneiropoiesis, and @AndNowImagine

The three bots reviewed in this entry all carry out essentially the same technique– they create a tweet based on the juxtaposition of material from two different sources–  yet produce output that feels quite different. The reasons for this are partly thematic, partly due to the data source, and partly because of the way the … Read more

“Real Human Praise (@RealHumanPraise)” by Rob Dubbin and Leonard Richardson

This bot takes Tweet-sized snippets of text from movie reviews aggregated in Rotten Tomatoes, identifies nouns in the subject position, and replaces those with the names of right-wing pundits who appear regularly on the Fox News Channel, attaching the ironically intended hashtag #PraiseFOX. The bot was created essentially as joke for the politically charged comedy … Read more

“the way bot (@thewaybot)” by Eli Brody

I like it when a bot makes me smile. The way that this deceptively simple bot works: it searches 1% of the Twitter stream for tweets that contain the phrase “I like it when,” cleans them up of all mentions, hashtags, and special characters to distill a sentence starting with that phrase, checks them against … Read more

“Never Forget Bot (@forgetmebot)” by Bradley Momberger

This bot performs a simple operation on a tweet it identifies from the Twitter stream every 5 minutes– it substitutes “in case you missed it” or “ICYMI” (or the hashtag versions of this popular Twitter phrase) with “Never forget” — and tweets the result every 5 minutes. It was inspired by the following tweet by … Read more