Monday, October 13, 2008


Via Professor Zero, here's an intriguing blog-based digital art project: We Feel Fine.

Since August 2005, We Feel Fine has been harvesting human feelings from a large number of weblogs. Every few minutes, the system searches the world's newly posted blog entries for occurrences of the phrases "I feel" and "I am feeling". When it finds such a phrase, it records the full sentence, up to the period, and identifies the "feeling" expressed in that sentence (e.g. sad, happy, depressed, etc.). Because blogs are structured in largely standard ways, the age, gender, and geographical location of the author can often be extracted and saved along with the sentence, as can the local weather conditions at the time the sentence was written. All of this information is saved.
Read more.


  1. Oooh, this is kinda kool! Thanks for sharing.

  2. this frightens and upsets me. How's that for an invasive program measuring my emotions that can so easily be used for nefarious purposes.

    It's so time for the myspace poem again.

  3. Ha! Hard to see how this isn't just touchy-feely noise. Reminds me of the Adolescent Poetry Generator, a text generator that takes real adolescent poetry as the input and randomizes it based on word order probability, with "I am" always the first phrase. Check it out!

  4. Carl, thanks for the link to the random emo-poetry. That's amazing.

    Profbw, to be fair, the posts are all public that are being recycled and repurposed for this art project. They aren't stealing the feelings straight out of anyone's soul against their will. I'm not sure how that can be construed as invasive. Google is much more invasive in the way it targets advertising at me and yet I find it difficult to work up much outrage even over that these days.