Thursday, 14 October 2010

What would you say is ‘the defining struggle in the world’ today?

I have just gotten around to reading a letter that my alma mater sent me, asking for money.  The opening paragraph reads as follows:
Today, the defining struggle in the world is between relentless growth and the potential for collaboration.  The borders that separate our societies from each other are blurring, as are the barriers that distinguish the sciences from arts and humanities.  We are becoming one world.  Our world.  The University of Oxford is a leader in thinking, envisaging and shaping this world through academic endeavour, interdisciplinary excellence and distinctive teaching.
I don’t know whether to laugh, yawn or retch.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

I write like…

I’ve just spent a while messing around with the I Write Like text analyzer (HT: Digest of Worms).  I’ve had all kinds of results from it, but one author was particularly prominent:

I write like
H. P. Lovecraft

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

This was the result for the vast majority of my reviews, both of albums (The Incident by Porcupine Tree, The Resistance by Muse) and books (William Wilberforce by William Hague; Darwinian Fairytales by David Stove; God, Gays and the Church by Lisa Nolland et al.), as well as The Nobel Peace Prize committee has surpassed itself, Human values and the value of humans and It’s not the economy, and don't call me stupid.  In second place:

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

The was the result for such disparate pieces of writing as A helpful warning from your friendly PC publisher and my reviews of The Testings of Devotion by Cheryl Dellasega and of In Rainbows by Radiohead.

Other than this I had somewhat varied results: Mary Shelly for Christian faith and modern British politics, a layman’s view and Some reflections on the elections, Edgar Allan Poe for my review of God’s Undertaker by John Lennox, Vladimir Nabokov for my review of Death Magnetic by Metallica, Douglas Adams for my review of Radiohead in Victoria Park, Arthur C. Clarke for my review of The Edge of Evolution by Michael Behe, Margaret Attwood for Carniphobia: a dialogue, Dan Brown for 01/01/10 and Jonathan Swift for Getting the crystal ball out.  I’m not sure how I feel about getting so many results comparing my writing to that of horror or sci-fi authors.

The results can be displayed graphically as follows:

writing style

(Sample size: 20).

So, who out there thinks this blog reads primarily like a deranged horror story?