This short story is about a surprising effect: you put something on the web without much advertising for it - and it might find perhaps more users than if you publish it in a traditional Journal. Here I talk about scientific or educational text. I often find similar cases the other way - things I am looking for might be at private pages and not in Journals. Often because some pieces of information which really are useful do not fit policies of any Journal, or the "referees" throw such trivial information away. This might be a long discussion, so let us rather go to my own little story.

Three years ago I decided to start with javascript. I wanted first to learn how to handle text strings and somehow I remembered the concept of a concordance (or concordancer), a tool used by my philosopher friend, but generally known from corpus linguistics. I suppose the decisive factor was my learning about wordle, a word cloud toy for producing beautiful word clouds. During a period of about one month in the fall of 2008 I made concordle. There was much to learn, how to generate links in text automatically, how to sort words, great fun. 

If you want to try concordle, go to the site, it loads the code, all in one page. Select the text in the text field, hit backspace - and you can enter your own text. Unfortunately - or furtunately for me, at that time it was still possible to find text in pure ASCII - that means just those 7 bit signs covering the English letters. So your text must be ASCII text, not the present UTF-8 text. SO if you want to put new text in concordle, do not copy from a text from a browser, rather simply from a simple text editor, like on Mac or notepad on Windows (on Unix the pure ASCII is still widely avilable if your default language is English). So any pure text entered into the text field can be analyzed and played with.

What does it do: It shows occurrences of the same word with snippets of the text. That is the concordancer function. But my enhancement is that you can click on any of the occurrences, you get a new field where each word is clickable. So you can click yourself through your analyzed text and see it in quite a different perspective. How the words appear, how they are combined. 

So concordle was at its address and I tried to sort of advertise for it at blogger,, and then there was time for doing serious work in physics instead of playing with programming in javascript. From that time concordle was on its own.

Some time later, I asked Google Alerts to tell me about people linking to concordle, found some tweets, some people liked it, I was pleased, and concordle was on its own.

Later I found that actually some people use concordle for serious teaching. Concordle lives its own life, and probably has about the same impact as if I had published it in some "Journal of ... Education".

So a piece of software found its way to users for uses I could not even imagined. The peers reviewed it without any organization. On the negative side, I was never told about it. But I am happy that concordle lives its own life. Some people copied it, so it can live further without my original site. Maybe you can use it to learn more about your own writing.