I’ve spent a good chunk of my workday so far creating memes thanks to this amazing website from Imgflip that automatically generates captions for memes using a neural network. I’m addicted because the site A) takes the pressure off trying to be clever by auto-filling the captions; B) actually, somehow, regularly generates clever captions; and C) sometimes creates captions that make no sense, which are hilarious anyway.
You can pick from 48 classic meme templates, including distracted boyfriend, Drake in “Hotline Bling,” mocking Spongebob, surprised Pikachu, and Oprah giving things away. To generate meme captions, you just have to click on the meme template on the top of the page. If you don’t like what the site serves up, or you just want to see what other ridiculous caption you might get, you can click a refresh button to get a new caption for the same meme. If you want to use an entirely different meme image, you just have to click over to another one.
The neural network was trained using public images uploaded to the site’s meme maker, according to Imgflip. The company warns that “no profanity filtering was done on the training data,” so there’s a chance you might see inappropriate language in the auto-generated captions.
I mobilized some colleagues to make some memes, and I’ve collected a few of my favorites below. You can also see a list of popular memes made by the generator right here.