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Wordless Web

Ji Lee's simple plug-in removes text from any site to let images stand alone

by Josh Rubin in Tech on 08 May 2012

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The endless stream of information available on the web can easily get clogged with an overload of messaging. To simplify your daily surfing sessions, former Google Creative Lab Creative Director Ji Lee—with the coding help of Cory Forsyth—has come up with the Wordless Web, a simple browser plug-in that takes any website and gets rid of the text, leaving only pictures. As longtime supporters of Lee's "special projects", we were keen to see a substantial array of websites' content reduced to a context-free assortment of images with one simple click.

By presenting the Internet as a palette of pictures only, the website reader becomes a viewer. "No text means no context," says Lee. "You're free to enjoy the images in their purest form, without names, labels, definitions, or purpose. It makes the pictures we see across the web more mysterious and open to interpretation of our own imaginations."

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Although we love the clean look of most websites without words, we noticed an interesting effect that the "Bubble Project" founder has exposed as a true eye-opener. While some websites benefit from being free of text, others seem to turn into giant advertising billboards. Regardless of the outcome, Wordless Web is an interesting adventure in turning something so vital upside down. Give it a go yourself at Wordless Web.

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