Computer-Generated Fiction May Not Be Far Fetched

Are we going to see authors face off with robot writers in the future?

aritificial intelligence
How will computer-generated fiction compare with those written by authors?

The Neukom Institute for Computational Science at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, US launched the first Neukom Institute Prizes in Computational Arts in July this year. The annual literary prize for algorithms employs a Turing test in creativity and is aimed at inspiring “innovations in computational methods that generate artistic products, such as literary, musical, and visual art.”

Proposed by British computer scientist and mathematical genius Alan Turing in 1950, the Turing test measures the ability of a machine to exhibit human intelligence.

While algorithms are capable of non-fiction writing, as in the case of The Associated Press’ Narrative Science, a software innovation that can whip up fiction with the writing flair of an articulate author is yet to be recognized. In 1984, however, an artificial intelligence computer program called Racter (short for “raconteur”) was invented by software technologists Bill Chamberlain and Thomas Etter. The technology produces random English language prose.

Critics believe that robot writers could function as co-authors of those writing about complex topics, such as climate change, and other topics beyond human comprehension and experience.

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