Weird stuff

What Happens When I Press The Red Button?

Jerry Vermanen
Jerry Vermanen
Apr 2 2017, 2:26

WTF happened when I pushed the red button?! Well congratulations, you just made a new Vice headline from almost 5,000 existing Vice headlines. Something called a Markov Chain shuffled the words from existing headlines in a new order and voila, it generated some unique Vice-esque stories. Just press the red button on top!

Read more on how this actually works.

You probably think: what's a Markov Chain? Here's a more detailed explanation, but in short: a chance-calculated model, in which each word gets a probability for following each other up. After the Markov Chain script takes apart all 4,764 existing sentences, it reconstructs the sentences with the calculated chance of sequences.

Language is a difficult thing to automate, so you will encounter a lot of grammatically incorrect headlines. But when it actually works, it's fun and magic. Markov Chain is used in a lot of other fields, like Google's PageRank, chatbots and academic simulations.

I made this because it's fun to fiddle around with new things. This is my method for learning new things: make, share with others and get feedback. So play around to find some cool headlines (and maybe some ideas for your own project or article).

Check out these earlier headlines:

  • We May Have Orgies Through Text Messages.

  • This Man Is Going to Endorse Hillary Clinton's Pantsuits.

  • Here's a Human Gummy Bear Week.

  • I Inherited My Suicidal Partner?

  • These Cops Know About Feelings.

  • People Tell When Tentacle Penetration Isn't as an Election.

There are some real gems in there. If you find any cool headlines, let me know through @JerryVermanen.

Thanks to Daniel Shiffman for the Markov Chain code, Hay Kranen for the idea, Vice for the inspiration, Bootstrap for the framework of the website and Tom Klaver and Yarno Ritzen for the feedback during this project. This website is part of #6projects (Dutch).