Robots Want To Be Writers Too

Robots writing stories is pointless without a meaningful framework.

To train Scheherazade, the researchers had the bot read hundreds of human-authored stories on two popular subjects: bank robberies and date nights at the movies. The program doesn’t understand the stories per se, but it can recognize important events and learn their sequence. For instance, when it reads a bunch of stories referencing movie popcorn, it learns that popcorn is something people like to buy at the movies, and that they do so before the movie starts.

Imagine what might happen if they incorporated a complex schematic of thematic story elements to hold all that important popcorn buying together? They might find they have something more meaningful than cause and effect.

At the moment, the researchers are paying people to write the stories Scheherazade is learning from using simple sentence structures. But eventually, the bot might develop to the point where it can read complex human novels, and remix them into interactive stories.

This is inevitable. Hopefully their brightest will discover Dramatica. Otherwise we might be facing a lot of pointless stories in our future.

Originally published 09-03-2015

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