Python 3 silly random name generator

I was recently working on a project to try to annoy my collaborator Eric by a scheduled script that sends him an email if there are open pull requests that I authored in a github repository he owns (pull-request-bot).

Along the way, I created this fun little function for coming up with random sort-of-realistic-but mostly-funny-sounding names in Python. I’m in the process of switching from Matlab to Python, so little toy functions and projects like this are a good way for me to learn the nuances of Python faster. In fact, I would argue this is the best way to learn a new programming language–no need for books or classes, just try things!

The script is super simple and I have posted it as a GitHub Gist so I won’t describe it all again here. Below the markdown description of the function is an actual Python file you can grab, or grab it from here.

The following code is written for Python3. Complete random name function in next file.

The first bit of code grabs a disctionary listing from the web and returns a list of all the entries in that dictionary (see https://stackoverflow.com/a/49524775/4038393).

import urllib.request

word_url = "http://svnweb.freebsd.org/csrg/share/dict/words?view=co&content-type=text/plain"
response = urllib.request.urlopen(word_url)
long_txt = response.read().decode()
words = long_txt.splitlines()

Output list of words:

>>> words
['a', 'AAA', 'AAAS', 'aardvark', 'Aarhus', 'Aaron', 'ABA', 'Ababa',
 'aback', 'abacus', 'abalone', 'abandon', 'abase', 'abash', 'abate',
 'abbas', 'abbe', 'abbey', 'abbot', 'Abbott', 'abbreviate', ... ]

Then we want to generate a list of 1) only upper case words, 2) only “name like” words (i.e., not abbreviations), and 3) a sort-of-realistic-but-fun sounding random name from the list:

import random
upper_words = [word for word in words if word[0].isupper()]
name_words  = [word for word in upper_words if not word.isupper()]
rand_name   = ' '.join([name_words[random.randint(0, len(name_words))] for i in range(2)])

And some random names:

>>> for n in range(10):
        ' '.join([name_words[random.randint(0,len(name_words))] for i in range(2)])

    'Semiramis Sicilian'
    'Julius Genevieve'
    'Rwanda Cohn'
    'Quito Sutherland'
    'Eocene Wheller'
    'Olav Jove'
    'Weldon Pappas'
    'Vienna Leyden'
    'Io Dave'
    'Schwartz Stromberg'

The whole script:

import urllib.request
import random

word_url = "http://svnweb.freebsd.org/csrg/share/dict/words?view=co&content-type=text/plain"
response = urllib.request.urlopen(word_url)
long_txt = response.read().decode()
words = long_txt.splitlines()

upper_words = [word for word in words if word[0].isupper()]
name_words  = [word for word in upper_words if not word.isupper()]
one_name = ' '.join([name_words[random.randint(0, len(name_words))] for i in range(2)])


def rand_name():
   name = ' '.join([name_words[random.randint(0, len(name_words))] for i in range(2)])
   return name


for n in range(10):
    name = rand_name()
    print(name)

Updated: