ASSIGNMENT #5 - MARKOV CHAIN
I really enjoyed this week’s assignment, even though I haven’t gotten to a place I’m happy with. It seems I am learning the skills to have more control over my output. I ran many different sources and experiments for this assignment - some of the outputs were incoherent or too repetitive, others I was actually pretty happy with when thinking of the context of the input.
Below is the summary of the experiments, troubles and results.
When I first started working on the assignment and following the tutorials was playing around with an excerpt from Hunter S. Thompson’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and Anti-Drug Slogans. Nothing really came out of it but I screenshot some outputs I liked.
I then moved on to trying to combine the lyrics from Jackson Browne’s (famously covered by Nico) These Days and Graham Nash's Better Days. Because these songs have almost the same amount of lines, similar style (in my opinion, I don’t play music so technically could be very wrong) and similar title names I thought maybe I could get some interesting output.
I ran into a few issues. Firstly I kept getting this error. I’m still not quite sure how I fixed it. I added periods to the end of every line in both lyrics ran it again and it worked. I don’t think that was it though so it could’ve been luck..
Then I kept getting these output. I changed the state_size to 2 and it worked, but didn’t return anything interesting. It was the same line over and over again.
I still ran the markovify.combine code and played around with taking the probabilities parameter out to see what would come out of it. Most of it was too repetitive/not interesting but a few lines caught my eye (see below):
Because I thought the issue might be that my text was too short, I changed the source to longer texts. I chose Roxane Gay’s manifesto which was later included in her book Bad Feminist (which I loved) and Nora Ephron’s essay ‘A Few Words About Breasts’ published in Esquire. I chose these two texts because I was interested in seeing how they could combine and whether the message (which is somewhat similar in both) would carry on. It was rewarding to see that in some cases it did. It’s a good starting point to creating truly interesting pieces.