Randomized Hobbit

@wrathematics pointed me to his ngram R package for constructing and simulating from n-grams from text.

I’d recently grabbed the text of the hobbit, and so I applied it to that text, with amusing results.

Here’s the code I used to grab the text.

library(XML)
stem <- "http://www.5novels.com/classics/u5688"
hobbit <- NULL
for(i in 1:74) {
    cat(i,"\n")
    if(i==1) {
        url <- paste0(stem, ".html")
    } else {
        url <- paste0(stem, "_", i, ".html")
    }

    x <- htmlTreeParse(url, useInternalNodes=TRUE)
    xx <- xpathApply(x, "//p", xmlValue)
    hobbit <- c(hobbit, gsub("\r", "", xx[-length(xx)]))
    Sys.sleep(0.5)
}

Then calculate the ngrams with n=2.

library(ngram)
ng2 <- ngram(hobbit, n=2)

Simulate some number of words with babble(). If you use the seed argument, you can get the result reproducibly.

babble(ng2, 48, seed=53482175)

into trees, and then bore to the Mountain to go through?” groaned the hobbit. “Well, are you doing, And where are you doing, And where are you?” it squeaked, as it was no answer. They were surly and angry and puzzled at finding them here in their holes

Update: @wrathematics suggested that I mix two texts, so here’s a bit from the Hobbit in the Hat (The Hobbit with 59× Cat in the Hat — up-sampled to match lengths.) But there’s maybe not enough overlap between the two texts to get much of a mixture.

“I am Gandalf,” said the fish. This is no way at all!

already off his horse and among the goblin and the dragon, who had remained behind to guard the door. “Something is outside!” Bilbo’s heart jumped into his boat on to sharp rocks below; but there was a good game, Said our fish No! No! Those Things should not fly.

Advertisements

Tags: , , ,

3 Responses to “Randomized Hobbit”

  1. dan Says:

    This is wonderful! I put it in the class of found poetry. You’ve taken the first derivative of The Hobbit.

  2. Zeyuan Hu Says:

    Your code syntax coloring in post is really beautiful! Do you mind telling what tool you are using to achieve this?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s