Web Generators

An evolving list of web generators which help you to rapidly create a host of audio visual helps and educational tools for free.

Thursday, March 31, 2005

3D image (X heads or Digimasks)

What are Digimasks or X heads?

The concept is very simple. Upload a picture of someone (facing forward), click on various parts of the picture, upload a second picture of the same person (side profile), click on various parts of the picture, and then hit the return button to see a finished product comprising of a 3-D image which moves and blinks.

To answer that question, Digimasks and X-heads are basically the same thing with slight differences.

What the Children's BBC had done is to embed Digimask into their website so that you can generate a digimask (or what they call an X-head) on their site.


For those of you who want to create a non-web-based 3D image, download the software and then create the image in your own computer.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Oddcast’s VHost SitePal™

This is an unbelievable site! Oddcast’s VHost SitePal™ allows you to create speaking animated characters (avatars) for your web site, and add your own audio message via Text-to-Speech or voice recording. The demo is free, but with it, you can see what can be done with animated avatars (an online characters) which are synch-ed with text to speech generators. Try it out and see how the character tracks with the movement of the cursor, and the many other amazing features possible.

Visit the site at http://www.oddcast.com/sitepal/?affid=285
When you have got to that site, click on the Try Now! button.

If any of you can get your churches to set aside money for this service (or get a church member to sponsor it for you), you can do a lot of nice things with it!

OK, some food for thought: For those who don't know the background to the term "avatar," it is originally a Hindu religious character but is often used to describe an online character or persona in a completely non religious sense.

Actually, this not the first time I have used the term 'avatar' in this blog. I wonder how Christians feel about the use of this term? That in itself is a topic for discussion and thought. It is used pervasively in the online world and is beginning to be used in a very nonreligioius and secular sense in a very different context than its original. I am not the first person to raise awareness of the matter of Christians using the term avatars. Check this out

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Text to voice generators

Text to voice generators are great for creating audio files by simply typing in the words you want spoken, clicking a button and voila!!

There are a couple of sites you can visit to generate male/female speech in several accents.

Scansoft's rVoice is one site which allows you to speak English, Greek, German and Spanish. For English, you can choose between American, Southern Californian, British, Scottish, Australian and Spanish accents.

The rVoice demo is made available for non-commercial demonstration purposes only. The input text is limited to 255 characters (about 50 words) and the output can take the form of either audio stream or you can download it as a .wav file (and add to a Powerpoint presentation???)


AT & T's Labs-Research site has an interactive multi-lingual demo which allows text to speech generation. I don't think it allows you to say the speech as a audio file though.


A doodle site

Here is a site which you can doodle in. You can even invite friends by IM (but its AOL only) or email to join you co-create your pictures on their computers. I can't think how useful this site is, but if you are a doodler...


Monday, March 28, 2005

Jigsaw Puzzle generators

I love this site!

You can use pictures which are already on this site (from the following categories: Animals, Art & Architecture, Special Times, Landscapes & Cities, People & Lifestyle, Plants & Food, Sports & Recreation, Transport, Travel & Culture, Cyber Art, Miscellaneous, World Flags, Logos); you can also upload your own pictures and then create jigsaw puzzles out of them. Talk about the ability to customize your puzzles!

What is more, you can choose the number of pieces you want your puzzle in and in quite a few different cut shapes. Best of all, you can even email these puzzles to friends.


You need to register but it is free!

Try this one I created

There is another site you may want to explore

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Beat Generator

Beaterator: Make your own beats via this Flash application


Saturday, March 26, 2005

Have a heart

Have you listened to your heart lately?

Friday, March 25, 2005

Tombstone generators???

Sounds weird but that's exactly what it is. 2 websites that allow you to generate personalized tombstones.

I can think of several ways you can use it to generate conversation starters or class discussions. You can even set, as a piece of homework, an assignment which requires your students to generate a tombstone which will describe what they want to be remembered for beyond the grave.

Here's the first
This is an example of what can be done using this tombstone generator
Tombstone with 2 Tim 4:7 text

Here is another tombstone generator site - this time for a pair of tombstones ("His" and "Hers"?)

What difference does Easter make to the hope and purpose we can have in our lives lived on this side of the grave? How would that hope be reflected in the words found on our tombstones?

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Creating Comic Characters

This is a site which you can use to create your avatar (an online character or persona). Of course, you don't have to use the characters online, you can created them for Powerpoint, as I am suggesting below:

This are two fun sites which are helpful for creating comic characters real quick.
Hi everyone!
"Hey where are my glasses???"

With this site you can create a character with multiple facial expressions in a very, very short time! The one's you see are shrunk to thumbnail size, so you can actually use them on Powerpoint for the purpose of story tellling. That, I think is the potential of this site. The same applies to the Mr Men characters below (for the younger kids)

Portrait Illustration Maker

Another one - this time in the style of Picasso!

This picture was created in Mr. PicassoHead –in just four minutes !

O, I couldn't resist putting in this picture. I am creating a series of Picasso style pictures to portray contemporary issues faced in Singapore
Current Issues
This one is about self-mutiliation amongst young people. What is the etiology behind the behavior?

For the romantics amongst us, you can be "Picassonova" and create a Picassonovahead on a heart shaped canvas

And another site

Yet another site - this time making Mr Men

How about creating a hero?

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Comics Generator

I have seen a lot of Christian educators and seminary teachers use comic strips to illustrate points they are trying to bring across. While this is an important resource to us, I want to encourage you to create comics.

There are a few websites which allow you to do this:


Strip Generator
Garfield Comic Generator

Created in Gnomz Comic Generator

My favourite site is Strip Creator (actually the site has been used to create some very blasphemous comic strips involving Jesus and God, so be warned. Also, if you are working with kids, please speak to their parents first), but it is quite powerful and its free. An example of a strip I created for discussion is posted below:

Here is another site to help you with some principles on creating comics strips


Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Paper Doll Generator

Who are our cultural heroes today? Pop stars? Models? Actors? Actresses? Royalty? World Leaders? Successful CEO?

This site allows the participant to dress up some of the present cultural heroes of our age.

What do our cultural heroes tell us about who we are, how our deepest subconscious values are shaped, and where our hearts are?

Monday, March 21, 2005

Graffiti Creator/Generator

Here is a site which helps you to do graffiti style texts. Real cool, but not always easy to figure out the word(s).


Sunday, March 20, 2005

Historical background to my interest in txt msgN in ministry

There is some history to my interest in the use of txt msgN for ministry. It all started with me pondering who are using the medium and how pervasively it is being used.

I met a Singaporean pastor friend who said to me that he hardly uses emails these days because "everyone uses SMS these days."

On a separate occasion, I asked a 13 year old niece how many SMS messages she uses per month. Her reply was about 900, and that most of her other friends use about 800.

Observation of Singaporean society seems to confirm that these comments are not just isolated pieces of anecdotal evidence. SMS is ubiquitous; the comments and observations suggest that SMS is the preferred communcations platform amongst many in Singapore today.

Anyway, that got me thinking about whether and how SMS has been used in ministry or in the context of education. I did a Internet search which uncovered some really interesting findings.

The one site that really grabbed me was ...



Applications for use of SMS and txt msgN

1. Here is a site which describes uses of SMS in different contexts. You will find the multiple uses really "innovative." Visit the site which is "Textually.org: All about texting, SMS and MMS" at http://www.textually.org/textually/archives/cat_sms_and_students.htm

2. Here is an article which describes how SMS has been used to break student apathy...

3. Here is another site - this time, one which reports a competition held to generate poems written in txt msg form. The article begins:

The message is the medium
Two of Britain's foremost poets, Peter Sansom and UA Fanthorpe, assess the creative output from your mobile phones in a competition that has inspired first-time and seasoned bards alike. Here are the poets' judgments and the winning entries...

First prize winner's entry
txtin iz messin,
mi headn'me englis,
try2rite essays,
they all come out txtis.
gran not plsed w/letters shes getn,
swears i wrote better
b4 comin2uni.
&she's african
Hetty Hughes

Read on at http://www.guardian.co.uk/online/story/0,3605,481985,00.html


Txt Lingo Generators

n d beginN God creatD d heavNz & d erth. nw d erth wz formless & Mt, drknez wz Ovr d surfAc of d dEp, & d Spirit of God wz hovRN Ovr d H2Oz.

What on earth is that stuff above? Well, actually if you haven't noticed it, it's a text written in text messaging (txt msgN) language which the SMS generation is so good at.

OK, here's the clue. Instead of struggling with writing those wretched text messages (OK the comment dates me), wouldn't it be great if you could just type a text into a computer program, press a button and voila, out comes the same message in txt msgN form?

Well, there are several sites which do just that:



Go familiarize yourselves with these sites and make sure you bookmark them in your browser. You notice that the first site actually allows you to do reverse translations too. Just bear in mind that there are different "dialects" of txt msgN lingo.

A snapshot of the transl8it.com site

You may also want to visit a few sites which help you understand text lingo and emoticons.


The big question after you find out that such sites exist relates to applications to ministries in the church and in seminaries. Consider just these two possible applications:

1) You take 8 bible texts and translate them into text messaging form and put them in powerpoint slides. You lead the games session in your church camp and get the different groups to guess the passage.

2) In your Sunday School class, you give a handout containing the txt msg form of several verses and get your students to translate them, and then reflect on the meaning of the passage.


What is your captive audience and sphere of usage? I suspect that because more than just the young people are using SMS, even older members can be competent in using and understanding the "language"

njoy d site. DIS iz onlE d 1st installment. ther R lots mo generators dat wiL b fEturD!

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Web Generators for a Web generation

The Web offers a host of very powerful affordances to educators. Existing and older education provisions have been defined by the techniques and tools designed to overcome the limitations and exploit the capacities of earlier media. For example, the earliest universities were constructed around medieval libraries that afforded access to rare hand-written books and manuscripts. Early forms of distance education were constructed using text and the delayed forms of asynchronous communications afforded by mail services. Campus-based education systems are constructed around physical buildings that afford meeting and lecture spaces for teachers and groups of students. The Web provides nearly ubiquitous access to quantities of content that are many orders of magnitude larger than those provided in any other medium. (Anderson 2004, 52)

Anderson, Terry. 2004. Toward a theory of online learning. In Theory and practice of online learning , ed. Terry Anderson and Fathi Elloumi:33-60. Canada: Athabasca University

The affordances of the web are growing and enabling those of us living in the age of ubiquitous Internet presence to do a lot more that we previously could.

One affordance which I wish to raise awareness amongst educators in the church/seminary would be the online tools which help create audio visual artifacts and educational tools for which multiple applications in the ministry of teaching and learning can be found. These are by and large available for no costs, and are called "generators" because they generate in a very short time artifacts which can be pressed into the service of the kingdom.

This site will feature a growing number of web generators which I hope will be useful for visitors.