technical notes

Word bowl app

I’m looking for an app that will display random lines from from a .txt file in a pretty way – something like a screensaver, or a webpage which I can customise with my own text file. The text file will be around 20,000 lines long. I like to imagine the sentences swimming across the screen. Maybe the smaller ones float nearer the top, the longest ones crawling along the bottom. Or maybe not. I don’t really care as long as at any one time some of the lines are disappearing and some are appearing, so that you are visited with a cloud or swarm of a selection of all the possible lines at any one time.

I’m sure there must be such an app out there. I don’t really want to have to learn flash to getting it working and looking nice. Surely someone has done the work for me. Can anyone provide any pointers please?

One reply on “Word bowl app”

The XScreensaver program ( has a “fortune” mode, where it can read from UNIX-style fortune databases and print random messages from those files. I don’t know what your requirements are. That program only runs on UNIX and OS X, and will probably require a fortune file rather than a text file. Still, it would probably do the job.

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