A Japanese AI Almost Won a Literary Prize

Hitoshi Matsubara from Japan’s Future University announced this week his research team’s short-form novel, co-authored with an artificial intelligence (AI), successfully passed the initial screening of a domestic literary competition. The team contributed a framework for the novel by selecting the gender of characters and outlining the plot, but the AI program was designed to combine the elements together as it chose specific sentences and words that had been pre-prepared by the researchers. The novel was entered to compete for the Hoshi Shinichi Literary Award, which accepts creative works from both humans and machines. Science fiction writer Satoshi Hase reports Matsubara’s novel was well structured, but the characters were not fully developed. “So far, AI programs have often been used to solve problems that have answers, such as Go and shogi,” Matsubara says. “In the future, I’d like to expand AI’s potential [so it resembles] human creativity.”

More info here: Motherboard (03/24/16) Emiko Jozuka

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