7 Dummy Text Generators: Which Is Your Favorite?

Tweet

Part of designing is giving the client an idea of how their copy will work with the design. You don’t want to make it difficult for them to envision how the final website will look. Sure, you could get the content from them and plug it in, but then you are forcing them to divide their attention between the content and the design. Plus, they may not have all the content written yet.

Text generators allow you to create filler text — usually Latin — that typically makes no sense, but completes the look of the design. Most generators allow you to specify the number of paragraphs and then provide the dummy text which you can copy and paste into your mockup. There are many of these tools out there with varying levels of functionality, and I compiled a list of seven:

1. Lipsum.com
Lipsum
This generator is one of the most popular. It is very straightforward, providing Latin filler text by the number of paragraphs, words, bytes and even lists that you specify. They also have a page where you can download placeholder banner ads. And you can download an add-on to use right in Firefox.

2. Malevole Text Generator

This one allows you to select the number of paragraphs up to five and then generates non-Latin text. The dummy text provided makes just enough sense to give you a laugh.

3. Typetester

TypetesterThis text generator allows you to specify the number of words, characters and paragraphs, style the text, and then copy the CSS for your design. You can also use any font installed on your system, which makes this a great tool for print work, too.

4. FillerText.com

This is a nice tool that allows you to select the amount of Latin text to generate per characters, words or paragraphs. It will produce up to 50 paragraphs of dummy text which is probably more than you’d ever need at one time.

5. Blind Text Generator

Blind Text GeneratorWith this one, you can select the amount of text, change the type of text (i.e. lorem ipsum, A-Z, actual copy), and create and copy the CSS. One really cool feature is the ability to drag and adjust the textarea to fit a specific column size.

6. Lorem Ipsum Generator 3

This one generates text in a number of languages and up to 100 paragraphs at a time. You can select to have it insert random question marks and exclamation points, too.

7. adhesiontextTM

adhesiontextThis generator lets you choose the characters, language and case. You can even plug in your own characters and it will shuffle them around to create character-based dummy text. This flexibility makes adhesiontext a popular tool among font designers.

So, of these or one that isn’t listed here, which is your favorite?

Free book: Jump Start HTML5 Basics

Grab a free copy of one our latest ebooks! Packed with hints and tips on HTML5's most powerful new features.

  • DonBurns99

    Lipsum.com has always been my favorite.

  • Jarryd

    Lipsum.com for this list, but have recently converted to Chris Coyier’s http://html-ipsum.com/

  • SuzyN

    This is a great list – but I have to say Duck Island’s Greek Machine is my favorite: http://www.duckisland.com/GreekMachine.asp !

  • tonychung

    Of the seven tools listed, I prefer Lorem Ipsum Generator 3 the most. Random paragraph lengths, punctuation, the ability to start with something other than Lorem Ipsum…

    Another web developer turned me onto HTML-Ipsum last year. Though it doesn’t randomly generate the text, it provides a mix and match of HTML tags to paste directly into any design.

    • http://www.avertua.com Alyssa Gregory

      Oh, that’s a good one, Tony! I love the ready-made options you can just copy and paste. Thanks for sharing!

  • http://www.heyraena.com raena

    Cool collection Alyssa!

    The thing that bugs me about using lorem ipsum is that it’s generally quite unlike English text: no one is speaking, the sentences are really long, and there’s not a lot of punctuation. So the generators that include some more breaks and so on are my favourite.

    Grabbing a bit of a public domain novel (Tom Sawyer’s the one I keep handy for this) is fun for a bit of variety if I’m the only one looking at it, plus it has shorter passages that are more like what you’d do on the web. Obviously it’s better not to do that for something you show to a client, for the reasons you mentioned, although when I’ve left it in there by accident it’s got a smile or two. :)

    • http://www.avertua.com Alyssa Gregory

      Copy from a novel is a great idea, Raena…I’ve actually used reports and even a business plan once to fill a block with text. Good, solid boring stuff works for me! :)

  • Mike T.

    Actually, HTMLIpsum blows them all away, allowing you to grab everything already in HTML. There’s even TextMate bundles and desktop apps. Pretty slick.

    HTML-Ipsum

  • GCRaya

    I always use Lipsum.com I didn’t know there were others out there. I’ll definitely check them out.

  • Kathryn

    I’ve been using the Duck Island Greeking Machine for years & love it. You can pick from “languages” including The Matrix, Hillbillly, Techno Babble, Marketing & Pseudo German, though I usually stick to good old Latin.

    http://www.duckisland.com/GreekMachine.asp

    • http://www.avertua.com Alyssa Gregory

      SuzyN and Kathryn – Great addition to the list! I think I’ll be using Duck Island’s Greeking Machine tomorrow…Techno Babble is perfect!

  • http://www.davepickstone.co.uk davepickstone

    I started off using Lipsum generator (the first one) for my needs. But then your list pointed me at the Malevole one – its just strange enough to keep me going.

    It also suits itself quite well for dummy text for bio/about me fields, which was my need tonight.

  • Ken Lagrsen

    Have to agree with this one, The metropolitan is great Hillbilly or the pseudo German with a bit of techno babble drives many to belly laughs

    SuzyN Says:
    February 18th, 2009 at 10:59 am

    This is a great list – but I have to say Duck Island’s Greek Machine is my favorite

  • tonychung

    @Kathryn: Greeking machine is awesome! LOL!

    Em sheep work tarnation outhouse throwed, her put caboose. Than him shed uncle jiggly promenade, hoosegow neighbor’s havin’ shootin’ how dumb. Promenade wrestlin’ hollarin’ liniment, fried mobilehome fell fiddle.

  • kingkool68

    You guys missed my favorite Lorem Ipscream -> http://www.russellheimlich.com/blog/yummy-loremipscream/

    They have a lot of great text filler tools like an identity generator for filling out forms and such. The emo song generator is pretty funny too.

  • Ravedesigns

    I use the “lorem and more” extension for Drwamweaver and always loved the corporate mumbo-jumbo talk – but the Duck Island site here seems to do the same and is accessible to everyone.

  • Anonymous
  • Jelen

    Using N.5 – Blind Text Generator without any problems. Suggest.

  • Prélude

    A another text generator : http://lorem.game-on-net.com/
    With texts in latin, french, english and more.

  • tiggsy

    I once had a client who spent so much time going on about the latin text, he forgot to look at the design, so I took a look at malevole. I asked it to generate 3 paragraphs and it came up with the lyrics to some of the cartoons my kids used to watch!

  • Simon Coombs

    html-ipsum.com should have been on list if not the number 1. I use coda for why web design and the use of coda clips from this site just make this site a show-stopper. I would advise anyone to try this one first.

  • http://www.panoconsulting.co.uk panoconsulting

    I never knew the other ones existed. Some of the features are good to know about. I have always used Lipsum.com.

  • Anonymous
  • http://www.nertworks.com NertWorks Studios

    This site provides a variety of differently themed filler text:

    http://www.organicipsum.com

    It also makes it easy to make word art out of the text you generate. Some of it’s pretty funny, I like the Martial Arts ipsum.