# 8. Markov Model

### Goals

• To learn about symbol tables.
• To learn about natural language processing.
• To use a Markov chain to create a statistical model of a piece of English text.
• To simulate the Markov chain to generate stylized pseudo-random text.

### Getting Started

• This is a partner assignment. Instructions for help finding a partner and creating a TigerFile group can be found on Ed.

• Download and expand the project zip file for this assignment, which contains the files you will need for this assignment.

• Review the beginning of Section 4.4 (pages 582–586) on using symbol tables in client code. For reference, here is a partial API of the ST data type.

• Review the material on the textbook on parameterized data type and generics (pages 566–570). The Key type parameter for the ST generic class can be any comparable type, such as String or Integer.

• Review precept exercises, especially FrequencyTable.

• Review the String data type. To extract a substring of a given string, review the substring method: s.substring(i, i + k) returns the the k-character substring of String s, starting at i. Note that it includes the left endpoint but excludes the right endpoint. Try some examples using jshell to understand how substring is used.

• Review the StdRandom.discrete() methods. There are two overloaded methods named StdRandom.discrete(). You may want to write some small programs to understand how they are used:

• One takes a floating-point array probabilities[] and returns index i with probability equal to probabilities[i]. The array entries must be non-negative and sum to 1.
• The other takes an integer array frequencies[] and returns index i with probability proportional to frequencies[i]. The array entries must be non-negative and not all zero.
• This is a partner assignment. Instructions for help finding a partner and creating a TigerFile group can be found on Ed.

• The rules for partnering:

• Choose a partner whose skill level is close to your own - only two partners per group.
• Complete all work with your partner, sharing the same screen. This includes debugging, testing, commenting, writing the readme.txt and acknowledgments.txt, and submitting the files.
• You and your partner must work together on all components. You may not split up the work. One partner may not start the assignment without the other partner present.
• Go to office hours or the Lab TAs with your partner; one partner may not edit the code without the other partner present.
• Use the following pair programming protocol: one partner, the driver, types the code and the other partner, the navigator, reviews the code, identifies bugs, and asks questions. Swap roles every thirty (30) minutes.
• Do not post your code where it is visible to anyone but you and your partner. Code can be shared using Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.
• You may not combine late days with your partner, or use your partner’s late days. For example, if one partner has used one late day, and the other partner has used three late days, and your assignment is submitted two days late, each partner will be charged two late days. So you may want to discuss this before you form a partnership.
• You and your partner must indicate that you both adhered to the partner collaboration rules in the acknowledgments.txt file.
• To dissolve a partnership, you must contact the course administrator.

### Background

#### Perspective

In the 1948 landmark paper A Mathematical Theory of Communication, Claude Shannon founded the field of information theory and revolutionized the telecommunications industry, laying the groundwork for today’s Information Age. In this paper, Shannon proposed using a Markov chain to create a statistical model of the sequences of letters in a piece of English text. Markov chains are now widely used in speech recognition, handwriting recognition, information retrieval, data compression, and spam filtering. They also have many scientific computing applications including the genemark algorithm for gene prediction, the Metropolis algorithm for measuring thermodynamical properties, and Google’s PageRank algorithm for web search. For this assignment, we consider a whimsical variant—generating stylized pseudo-random text.

#### Markov model of natural language

Shannon approximated the statistical structure of a piece of text using a mathematical model known as a Markov model. A Markov model of order 0 predicts that each letter in the alphabet occurs with a fixed probability. We can fit a Markov model of order 0 to a specific piece of text by counting the number of occurrences of each letter in that text, and using those frequencies as probabilities. For example, suppose that the input text is "gagggagaggcgagaaa". Then, the Markov model of order 0 predicts that each letter is an a with probability 7/17, a c with probability 1/17, and a g with probability 9/17 because these are the fraction of times each letter occurs. The following sequence of characters is a typical example generated from this model:

g a g g c g a g a a g a g a a g a a a g a g a g a g a a a g a g a a g ...


A Markov model of order 0 assumes that each letter is chosen independently. This independence does not coincide with statistical properties of English text because there a high correlation among successive characters in a word or sentence. For example, w is more likely to be followed by e than by u, and q is much more likely to be followed by u than by e.

We obtain a more refined model by allowing the probability of choosing each successive letter to depend on the preceding letter or letters. A Markov model of order $$k$$ predicts that each letter occurs with a fixed probability, but that probability can depend on the previous $$k$$ characters, which we refer to as a $$k$$-gram. For example, suppose that the input text has 100 occurrences of "th", with 60 occurrences of "the", 25 occurrences of "thi", 10 occurrences of "tha", and 5 occurrences of "tho". Then, the Markov model of order $$2$$ predicts that the letter immediately following any occurrence of "th" is e with probability 3/5, i with probability 1/4, a with probability 1/10, and o with probability 1/20.

#### A brute-force solution

Claude Shannon proposed the following brute-force scheme to generate text according to a Markov model of order 1:

To construct [a Markov model of order 1], for example, one opens a book at random and selects a letter at random on the page. This letter is recorded. The book is then opened to another page and one reads until this letter is encountered. The succeeding letter is then recorded. Turning to another page this second letter is searched for and the succeeding letter recorded, etc. It would be interesting if further approximations could be constructed, but the labor involved becomes enormous at the next stage.

Your task is to write a Java program to automate this laborious task, in an efficient manner. Shannon’s approach is prohibitively slow when the length of the input text is large.

• Implement two classes:
• MarkovModel.java
• TextGenerator.java
• Submit a completed readme.txt file.
• Complete the acknowledgments.txt file.

### MarkovModel

Create an immutable data type to represent a Markov model of order $$k$$, based on a given input text. Implement the following API:

public class MarkovModel {

// creates a Markov model of order k based on the specified text
public MarkovModel(String text, int k)

// returns the order of the model (also known as k)
public int order()

public String toString()

// returns the # of times 'kgram' appeared in the input text
public int freq(String kgram)

// returns the # of times 'c' followed 'kgram' in the input text
public int freq(String kgram, char c)

// returns a random character, chosen with weight proportional to the
// number of times each character followed 'kgram' in the input text
public char random(String kgram)

// tests all instance methods to make sure they're working as expected
public static void main(String[] args)
}


#### Constructor

You may assume that the input text is limited to a sequence of characters over the ASCII alphabet, so that all char values are between 0 and 127.

#### String representation.

Build a string representation of the Markov model, as illustrated in the example below.

aa: a 1 g 1
ag: a 3 g 2
cg: a 1
ga: a 1 g 4
gc: g 1
gg: a 1 c 1 g 1


Include one line for each $$k$$-gram that appears in the text. Each line contains the $$k$$-gram, followed by a colon; followed by each character that appears in the text immediately after that $$k$$-gram and the number of times it appears, with a space between each component. The $$k$$-grams must appear in lexicographic order; the characters associated with each $$k$$-gram must appear in ASCII order.

#### Randomly generate a character.

The random() method must return a character that immediately follows the specified $$k$$-gram and do so with probability proportional to the number of times that character follows the specified $$k$$-gram. For example if the $$k$$-gram "ga" appears in the text five times, once followed by the character a and four times followed by the character g, then random("ga") returns a with probability 1/5 and g with probability 4/5, independently for each call.

#### Circular string.

To avoid dead ends, treat the input text as a circular string: the last character is considered to precede the first character. For example, if k = 2 and the text is the 17-character string gagggagaggcgagaaa, then the salient features of the Markov model are captured in the table below:

               frequency of   probability that
next char       next char is
kgram   freq    a   c   g        a    c    g
----------------------------------------------
aa      2      1   0   1       1/2   0   1/2
ag      5      3   0   2       3/5   0   2/5
cg      1      1   0   0        1    0    0
ga      5      1   0   4       1/5   0   4/5
gc      1      0   0   1        0    0    1
gg      3      1   1   1       1/3  1/3  1/3
----------------------------------------------
17      7   1   9


Note that the frequency of "ag" is 5 (and not 4) because we treat the string as circular.

#### Corner cases.

• Throw an IllegalArgumentException in freq() and random() if the argument kgram is not of length $$k$$.

• Throw an IllegalArgumentException in random() if kgram does not appear in the text.

#### Performance requirements.

If $$k$$ is a fixed constant, then the constructor must take $$n\log{}n$$ time (or better); the order() method must take constant time; the random() and two freq() methods must take $$\log{}n$$ time (or better), where $$n$$ is the number of characters in the input text. To achieve these performance requirements, use one (or more) symbol tables whose keys are String $$k$$-grams and whose values enable efficient implementation of the two freq() methods.

### Text generation client - TextGenerator

A Markov chain is a stochastic process where the state change depends on only the current state. For text generation, the current state is a $$k$$-gram. The next character is selected at random, using the probabilities from the Markov model. For example, if the current state is "ga" in the Markov model of order $$2$$ discussed above, then the next character will be a with probability 1/5 and g with probability 4/5. The next state in the Markov chain is obtained by appending the new character to the end of the $$k$$-gram and discarding the first character. A trajectory through the Markov chain is a sequence of such states. Below is a possible trajectory consisting of 9 transitions.

trajectory:          ga  -->  ag  -->  gg  -->  gc  -->  cg  -->  ga  -->  ag  -->  ga  -->  aa  -->  ag
probability for a:       1/5      3/5      1/3       0        1       1/5      3/5      1/5      1/2
probability for c:        0        0       1/3       0        0        0        0        0        0
probability for g:       4/5      2/5      1/3       1        0       4/5      2/5      4/5      1/2


Treating the input text as a circular string ensures that the Markov chain never gets stuck in a state without any next characters.

To generate random text from a Markov model of order $$k$$, set the initial state to the first $$k$$ characters in the input text. Then, simulate a trajectory through the Markov chain by performing $$T − k$$ transitions, printing the random character selected at each step. For example, if $$k = 2$$ and $$T = 11$$, then the following is a possible trajectory, leading to the output gaggcgagaag.

trajectory:          ga  -->  ag  -->  gg  -->  gc  -->  cg  -->  ga  -->  ag  -->  ga  -->  aa  -->  ag
output:              ga        g        g        c        g        a        g        a        a        g


Write a client program TextGenerator that takes two integer command-line arguments $$k$$ and T; reads the input text from standard input; builds a Markov model of order $$k$$ from the input text; then, starting with the $$k$$-gram consisting of the first $$k$$ characters of the input text, prints $$T$$ characters generated by simulating a trajectory through the corresponding Markov chain.

> more input17.txt
gagggagaggcgagaaa

> java-introcs TextGenerator 2 11 < input17.txt
gaggcgagaag

> java-introcs TextGenerator 2 11 < input17.txt
gaaaaaaagag


#### Corner cases.

You may assume that the length of the text is at least $$k$$ and $$T \geq k$$.

#### Performance requirement.

If $$k$$ is a fixed constant, then the running time of TextGenerator must be proportional to $$n\log{}n + T\log{}n$$ (or better), where $$n$$ is the number of characters in the input text and $$T$$ is the number of characters in the output.

### Possible Progress Steps

We provide some additional instructions below. Click on the ► icon to expand some possible progress steps or you may try to solve Markov without them. It is up to you!

#### Implementing MarkovModel.java

1. Review the material in the textbook on symbol tables as well as IntegerSort.java.

2. Create one or more instance variables to support the two freq() methods. One strategy is to maintain two symbol tables—one for the one-argument freq() method and one for the two-argument freq() method.

• For each $$k$$-gram (a string), the first symbol table tells you how many times it appears in the text (an integer).
• For each $$k$$-gram (a string), the second symbol table tells you how many times each ASCII character succeeds the $$k$$-gram in the text (an array of 128 integers).

Character (i.e., char values) can be used as an index into an array. In Java, characters are 16-bit (unsigned) integers; they are promoted to ints in any context that expects one. For example, array['c'] is equivalent to array[99] because the ASCII code for 'c' is 99.

3. Write the constructor to create the circular version of the input text. Then initialize and populate your symbol tables, using the symbol-table methods contains(), get(), and put(). This will be a substantial amount of code, relative to the other methods in this class.

• Do not save the original text (or the circular text) as an instance variable because no instance method will need this information after the symbol table is initialized.
• There are a number of approaches for emulating the circular text. One way is to append the first $$k$$ characters of the input text to the input text.
4. Test: In the main(), try creating some MarkovModel objects. For example:

String text1 = "banana";
MarkovModel model1 = new MarkovModel(text1, 2);
...
String text2 = "gagggagaggcgagaaa";
MarkovModel model2 = new MarkovModel(text2, 2);

5. Write the toString() method. Use the enhanced for loop to access each key–value pair in your symbol table:

// st2 is the second symbol table (corresponding to the two-argument freq() method)
StringBuilder result = new StringBuilder();
for (String key : st2) {
result.append(key + ": ");

// get the character frequency array
int[] frequency = st2.get(key);

// for each non-zero entry, append the character and the frequency
// trailing space is allowed
...

// append a newline character
result.append("\n");
}

6. Test the constructor and toString() method: This can help you debug small test cases. In the main(), print some MarkovModel objects. For example:

String text1 = "banana";
MarkovModel model1 = new MarkovModel(text1, 2);
StdOut.println(model1);
...
String text2 = "gagggagaggcgagaaa";
MarkovModel model2 = new MarkovModel(text2, 2);
StdOut.println(model2);


Sample output from the code snippet above:

ab: a 1
an: a 2
ba: n 1
na: b 1 n 1

aa: a 1 g 1
ag: a 3 g 2
cg: a 1
ga: a 1 g 4
gc: g 1
gg: a 1 c 1 g 1


You can insert a line break in a String by using the characters \n. For example, if you print "ab\ncd", ab and cd will appear on separate lines.

7. Write the order() method. This should be a one-liner.

8. Using the symbol table instance variables, write the two freq() methods.

9. Use the main() provided above to test your code before continuing. In the main method, you should add more tests of the constructor, order(), and freq() methods.

10. Write the random() method. To generate a random character with probability proportional to its frequency you may call either of the two StdRandom.discrete() methods.

11. It may not be obvious from your final results whether random() is working as intended, so be sure to test it thoroughly. Next, test your complete MarkovModel data type before continuing.

#### Testing Your MarkovModel.java Implementation

We provide a main() as a start to your testing. You will need to provide more tests.

public static void main(String[] args) {
String text1 = "banana";
MarkovModel model1 = new MarkovModel(text1, 2);
StdOut.println("freq(\"an\", 'a')    = " + model1.freq("an", 'a'));
StdOut.println("freq(\"na\", 'b')    = " + model1.freq("na", 'b'));
StdOut.println("freq(\"na\", 'a')    = " + model1.freq("na", 'a'));
StdOut.println("freq(\"na\")         = " + model1.freq("na"));
StdOut.println();

String text3 = "one fish two fish red fish blue fish";
MarkovModel model3 = new MarkovModel(text3, 4);
StdOut.println("freq(\"ish \", 'r') = " + model3.freq("ish ", 'r'));
StdOut.println("freq(\"ish \", 'x') = " + model3.freq("ish ", 'x'));
StdOut.println("freq(\"ish \")      = " + model3.freq("ish "));
StdOut.println("freq(\"tuna\")      = " + model3.freq("tuna"));
}


If your method is working properly, you will get the following output:

> java-introcs MarkovModel
freq("an", 'a')    = 2
freq("na", 'b')    = 1
freq("na", 'a')    = 0
freq("na")         = 2

freq("ish ", 'r') = 1
freq("ish ", 'x') = 0
freq("ish ")      = 3
freq("tuna")      = 0


To test random(), write a loop that calls random() repeatedly, and count how many times a particular character is returned. For example, with model1 above, random("na") should return b about one-half of the time; with model2 above, random("fish") should return o about one-quarter of the time.

Of course, you should try to define and test other models.

#### Implementing TextGenerator.java

1. Read in k and T from the command line; read the input text from standard input.
2. Create a MarkovModel object of order k using the input text.
3. To generate a trajectory of length T, use the first k characters in the input text as the initial $$k$$-gram and print the initial $$k$$-gram. Then, repeatedly generate and print a new random character according to the Markov model and update the $$k$$-gram to store the last k characters printed.
4. Make sure to test your program on large inputs (we provide several), large outputs, and different values of k.

Should my program generate a different output each time I run it? Yes.

How can I read in the input text from standard input? Use StdIn.readAll(). Do not remove whitespace.

My random text ends in the middle of a sentence. Is that OK? Yes, that’s to be expected.

After executing the program, the command prompt appears on the same line as the random text. Is that OK? Yes. It’s because the random text does not end with a newline character. If you want to add a call to StdOut.println() at the end of your program, that’s fine—we promise not to deduct.

For which values of $$k$$ should my program work? It should work for all well defined values of $$k$$, from 0 up to, and including, the length of the input text. As $$k$$ gets larger, your program will use more memory and take longer.

My program is slow when $$T$$ is large because I am concatenating the $$T$$ characters, one at a time, to form string of length $$T$$). What else can I do? Do you need to form the entire string? Why not print the characters, one at a time, as you generate them?

I get an OutOfMemoryException. How do I tell Java to use more of my computer’s memory? Depending on your operating system, you may have to ask the Java Virtual Machine for more main memory beyond the default. The 500m means 500MB, and you should adjust this number depending on the size of the input text.

> java-introcs -Xmx500m TextGenerator 7 1000 < input.txt


#### Testing Your TextGenerator.java Implementation

Be sure to test TextGenerator with different values of k.

An order-0 Markov model generates a random sequence of letters where each letter appears with probability proportional to its frequency in the input text. For input17.txt there are nine g’s, seven a’s, and one c. So we want the probability of generating a g to be 9/17, an a to be 7/17, and a c to be be 1/17. In a sequence of 100 characters, we would therefore expect on average about 53 g’s, 41 a’s, and 6 c’s.

> java-introcs TextGenerator 0 100 < input17.txt
gaaagaacagcagacgacggaagaaggaggaaaaggaggggaggggggaggaggaagggagaaaggagacagcggaggggacgggaggagaggaggagag


As documented in the assignment specification, in an order-2 model for input17.txt, the next character after "ga" is a with probability 1/5 and g with probability 4/5. So, if you run the following command ten times, you should expect (on average) to see "gag" approximately eight times and "gaa" approximately two times.

> java-introcs TextGenerator 2 3 < input17.txt
gag


### Generating Text Using Different Inputs and Orders

Once you get the program working, test it on different inputs of different sizes and different orders. Does increasing the order have the effect you expect? Try your model on something that you have written or some other text you know well. Make sure to test both long inputs (we provide several) and long outputs. Here are a couple of examples (click on the ► icon to expand to expand/collapse):

Example 1 Input: Speech to the Class of 2018

Good afternoon and welcome to Opening Exercises. What a special pleasure it is to greet Princetons Great Class of 2018! I also offer a warm welcome to our new graduate students, faculty and staff members, and all of you who are returning to campus after the summer.

Today we carry on a tradition that dates back at least to 1802, when Nassau Hall was the site of an opening exercise for Princeton students. The event switched to other sites before moving in 1929 to the University Chapel, where we gather today. Todays interfaith ceremony is far different from the Christian services that greeted students in 1929, but the chapels soaring architecture and inspirational spaces continue to invite all of us, whatever our religious or ethical traditions might be, to reflect on the larger purposes that should guide our community as we begin another year on this glorious campus.

Today you join the ranks of students who have left their marks on the Princeton campus and the world for generations through their intellect, creativity and passion. You, the 1,312 members of the Class of 2018, are an extraordinarily accomplished, inspiring and diverse group. You hail from 46 states, as well as the District of Columbia. You come from 50 countries outside of the United States from Chile to the Czech Republic, from Iceland to India, from Nigeria to New Zealand. You grew to become upstanding, compassionate citizens in Happy Valley, Oregon, and Niceville, Florida. You weathered the ups and downs of life in Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania, and Frostburg, Maryland. And you learned to appreciate the lyrical majesty of language in Ho Ho Kus, New Jersey, and Oologah, Oklahoma.

Example 1 output: random Eisgruber, using order 7 model

> java-introcs TextGenerator 7 798 < opening-exercises.txt


Good afternoon and welcome to a universities around you here.

I often ask Princeton is a truly global institution. As scholars who matter most to you. And you here.

I often ask Princeton you have come to our social natures, and, more specifically, with drums and choirs and distinguished teachers, whose contributions will become upstanding.

This Universitys GREAT CLASS OF 2018! Welcome new members play indispensable roles in helping our Universitys GREAT CLASS OF 2018! I also offer insignificant, or puzzling, or uninteresting, or unsympathetic may turn out to be discourse in all disciplines here as rich with meaningful, not just of any story, can make it easy to feel without knowing exactly what he was destined to appreciate the lyrical majesty of language in Ho Ho Kus, New Jersey, and

Example 2 Input: As you Like It, Act 2

[Enter DUKE SENIOR, AMIENS, and two or three Lords, like foresters]

DUKE SENIOR Now, my co-mates and brothers in exile, Hath not old custom made this life more sweet Than that of painted pomp? Are not these woods More free from peril than the envious court? Here feel we but the penalty of Adam, The seasons’ difference, as the icy fang And churlish chiding of the winter’s wind, Which, when it bites and blows upon my body, Even till I shrink with cold, I smile and say ‘This is no flattery: these are counsellors That feelingly persuade me what I am.’ Sweet are the uses of adversity, Which, like the toad, ugly and venomous, Wears yet a precious jewel in his head; And this our life exempt from public haunt Finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, Sermons in stones and good in every thing. I would not change it.

AMIENS Happy is your grace, That can translate the stubbornness of fortune Into so quiet and so sweet a style.

DUKE SENIOR Come, shall we go and kill us venison? And yet it irks me the poor dappled fools, Being native burghers of this desert city, Should in their own confines with forked heads Have their round haunches gored.

Example 2 output: random Shakespeare, using order 6 model

> java-introcs TextGenerator 7 1135 < as-you-like-it.txt


DUKE SENIOR Now, my co-mates and thus bolden’d, man, how now, monsieur Jaques, Unclaim’d of his absence, as the holly! Though in the slightest for the fashion of his absence, as the only wear.

TOUCHSTONE I care not for meed! This I must woo yours: your request than your father: the time, That ever love I broke my sword upon some kind of men Then, heigh-ho! sing, heigh-ho! sing, heigh-ho! sing, heigh-ho! unto the needless stream; ‘Poor deer,’ quoth he, ‘Call me not so keen, Because thou the creeping hours of the sun, As man’s feasts and women merely players: Thus we may rest ourselves and neglect the cottage, pasture? Enter DUKE FREDERICK Can in his time in my heartily, And have me go with your fortune In all this fruit Till than bear the arm’s end: I will through Cleanse the uses of the way to look you. Know you not, master, Sighing like upon a stone another down his bravery is not so with his effigies with my food: To speak my mind, and inquisition And unregarded age in corners throat, He will come hither: He dies that hath engender’d: And you to the bed untreasured of the brutish sting it.

### Submission

Submit to to TigerFile : MarkovModel.java, TextGenerator.java, completed readme.txt and acknowledgments.txt files . Include in your readme.txt two of the most entertaining language-modeling fragments that you discover.

### Challenges

#### Challenge for the bored 1.

The current assignment only handles ASCII characters. However, many text collections use Unicode characters, such as those with diacritic marks (e.g.: ā ă ą ç é ē î ï ĩ í ĝ ġ ń ñ ö š ŝ ś û ů ŷ Á Ç) and other characters (e.g., 😀 ł đ ħ œ ⺆).

Extend your solution so that it replaces and/or removes such Unicode characters in your text. Hint - use the API provided in the ToASCII.java class. Try your solution on a text that contains Unicode.

#### Challenge for the bored 2.

Extend your solution to handle Unicode text, not just ASCII.

#### Challenge for the bored 3.

Imagine you receive a message where some of the characters have been corrupted by noise. We represent unknown characters by the ~ symbol (and assume the character ~ does not appear in the original text). Devise a scheme based on the Markov model to determine the most likely value for each corrupted character. Assume unknown characters are at least $$k$$ characters apart (and appear at least $$k$$ characters away from the start and end of the message). Test your new method by writing a client program FixCorrupted.java that takes as arguments the model order and the noisy string. The program prints the most likely original string:

Original:  it was the best of times, it was the worst of times.
Noisy:     it w~s th~ bes~ of tim~s, i~ was ~he wo~st of~times.

> java-introcs FixCorrupted 4 "it w~s th~ bes~ of tim~s, i~ was ~he wo~st of~times." < wiki_100k.txt
it was the best of times, it was the worst of times.


### Enrichment

• What is the origin of the Markov text generator? It was first described by Claude Shannon in 1948. The first computer version was apparently written by Don P. Mitchell, adapted by Bruce Ellis, and popularized by A. K. Dewdney in the Computing Recreations section of Scientific American. Brian Kernighan and Rob Pike revived the program in a University setting and described it as an example of design in The Practice of Programming. The program is also described in Jon Bentley’s Programming Pearls.

• Here’s a website that generates pseudo-random computer science papers. It uses something called a context-free grammar instead of a Markov chain, but otherwise is similar in spirit to what you are doing on this assignment.

• Here are Garfield comics generated by a Markov chain.

• What else can I do with a random text generator? One former COS 126 student recited its output during the Frist filibuster.

• We are implementing the model Shannon described in his landmark paper. But the “one reads until this letter is encountered” method in his quote on the assignment page is, ironically, not a statistically accurate example of his model. If we run your program with input wawawaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawy then w should be followed by a 75% of the time, while the read until model will follow w with a only 15% of the time. What would be involved in simulating this other model? Which one do you think gives more realistic text?