Sunday, February 20, 2011

Robot Wins Jeopardy, But Can It Write Poetry?

Saw this over at Huffington Post:

Watson's impressive debut on Jeopardy this past week got me wondering if there has ever been a serious attempt to program an artificial intelligence to write good poetry. I don't mean just throwing together a proper meter and rhyme scheme -- that seems easy enough. I'm talking about an attempt to create a machine that "understands" how to manipulate language to convey freshness, wisdom and emotional depth.


So . . . "freshness, wisdom, and emotional depth" are the hallmarks of poetry? I'd say that is pretty close. In this day and age I might also add humor, irony, and the ability to dwell in uncertainties -- to hold multiple senses and meanings in the same line without blowing a circuit (do computers have circuits?).


I wonder if the writer of this article has ever seen the numerous sonnet and villanelle generators that exist online?


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