Bible (alphabetical order) by Rory Macbeth
This dos app (coded by Ian Macbeth) reorganises the complete text of the bible (in this instance, but any text you give it really) into alphabetical order. Did *you* know that the worlds most popular book has 313 exclamation marks, 56 'slaughters' and 86 instances of the word 'ass'? Without bibalph, how would you ever have found out eh?
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As the author mentions on the project homepage: "By applying one system by which we order and make sense of things (alphabetical order), to another that is wide open to interpretation (the Bible), we are left with bugger-all, apart from some pretty patterns, but in a minimal, texty way, so it looks like art."

But what I found really nice about this project is that it allows the audience to see the sorts of words the text uses - quantitatively, but also qualitatively: "make make make makeat makeat makeat maketh maketh maketh maketh.... " It works as something of a parody of the contemporary obsession with systems and data visualization - but at the same time, it is a data visualization, working on the micro, rather than the usual macro, level. The software can be run on any text, and one can imagine a variety of interesting candidates for input. However, the Bible, the world's most examined text, seems especially appropriate for this type of microscopic analysis.

by Amy Alexander, posted 13 May 2003

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