Thursday, October 26, 2023

Word Clouds of ADS Chapters

 I'm teaching the second semester of our Discrete Structures sequence and gave a quiz simply asking students to define group.  The results were not so good.  The emphasize how important it is to know this and other definitions, I decided to construct a word cloud of Chapter 11, which is an introduction to Algebraic Structures, mostly groups.   

My first attempt - just asking Mathematica to construct a word cloud of the text -  was not satisfactory since all the non-math words got in the way, although group was still prominent.  My solution was to take the index of the book and generate a list of the words in it.   Then I selected from the text only those words that appear in the index, keeping duplicates.  The result is pretty good.  I did the same for the chapter on graphs, Chapter 9.

Word Cloud for Chapter 11

Word Cloud for Chapter 9

One benefit of doing this is that I could catch words that should be in the index that are missing. One word I expected in the graph cloud was edge.  It was totally missing because I had neglected to include it in the index - something that I'm going to fix!

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