Can a computer write a poem?


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Thread: Can a computer write a poem?

  1. #1

    Can a computer write a poem?

    A team of researchers from Microsoft and Kyoto University developed a poet AI good enough to fool online judges, according to a paper published Thursday on the preprint site arXiv. It’s the latest step towards artificial intelligence that can create believable, human-passing language, and, man, it seems like a big one.


    In order to generate something as esoteric as a poem, the AI was fed thousands of images paired with human-written descriptions and poems. This taught the algorithm associations between images and text. It also learned the patterns of imagery, rhymes, and other language that might make up a believable poem, as well as how certain colors or images relate to emotions and metaphors.


    Once the AI was trained, it was then given an image and tasked with writing a poem that was not only relevant to the picture but also, you know, read like a poem instead of algorithmic nonsense.


    And to be fair, some of the results were pretty nonsensical, even beyond the sorts of nonsense you’d find in a college literary magazine.




    this realm of rain

    grey sky and cloud

    it’s quite and peaceful

    safe allowed






    And, arguably, worse:






    I am a coal-truck

    by a broken heart

    I have no sound

    the sound of my heart

    I am not






    or maybe this one:






    the sun is shining

    the wind moves

    naked trees

    you dance

    And one more.

    and now I am tired of my own

    let me be the freshening blue

    haunted through the sky bare and cold water

    warm blue air shimmering

    brightly never arrives

    it seems to say




    https://futurism.com/artificial-intelligence-bad-poems






    It does get a little better:




    you


    ...are

    .........inscribed
    ..............in the
    ...............lines on the
    ......ceiling

    .......you

    are

    ...inscribed in
    ..........the depths
    ..of
    ..........the
    ...storm




    The idea is not new, but the technologies and mediums are. In 2010, Duke University undergrad Zackary Scholl modified a program that used a context-free grammar system to spit out full-length, auto-generated poems. He then submitted the output to online poetry websites, in order to gauge reader reaction (in his words, it was “overwhelmingly positive.”)


    One of his poems was actually accepted by the Duke literary journal, The Archive. This is it:


    A home transformed by the lightning
    the balanced alcoves smother
    this insatiable earth of a planet, Earth.
    They attacked it with mechanical horns
    because they love you, love, in fire and wind.
    You say, what is the time waiting for in its spring?
    I tell you it is waiting for your branch that flows,
    because you are a sweet-smelling diamond architecture
    that does not know why it grows.


    https://medium.com/@Yisela/computer-generated-poetry-will-knock-your-socks-off-763c815a1b52


    Clearly, a computer can write a poem that some editors, at least, cannot distinguish from human poems and are willing to publish. What does that say about the future of poetry and art in general? I think the more pertinent question might be: Regardless of perceived quality, is a poem written by a computer a real poem?

  2. #2
    Proof that poetry is bullshit.

  3. #3
    No it isn't. But it might be proof that poetry written by machines is bullshit. Or maybe it's proof that some editors can't tell bullshit from poetry.

  4. #4
    What's next? Novels?


    "In the year 2525, if man is still alive..."

    Zager and Evans
    "Self-righteousness never straddles the political fence."

    Midnightpoet


    "The bible says to love your neighbor. It's obvious that over the centuries it has been interpreted as the opposite."
    (sarcasm alert)

    Midnightpoet


    Hidden Content Hidden Content

  5. #5
    I think the answer may not lie in ability but in intent. Why would a computer write a poem? Could a computer even decide to write a poem without being commanded to so so?

  6. #6
    Do computers have intent?
    There was never a great genius without a trace of madness. Attributed to Aristotle.

  7. #7
    Bullshit is poetry, presented in a logical manner, all bullshit makes great poetry...if you can avoid the stench.
    There was never a great genius without a trace of madness. Attributed to Aristotle.

  8. #8
    It's an math equation though. They did one for art and didn't do a good job. Google is the company that did one. It created bizarre images of computer generated art. It didn't look human per say, but maybe they are waiting and are optimistic until it improves.
    I would follow as in believe in the words of good moral leaders. Rather than the beliefs of oneself.
    The most difficult thing for a writer to comprehend is to experience silence, so speak up. (quoted from a member)

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Theglasshouse View Post
    It's an math equation though. They did one for art and didn't do a good job. Google is the company that did one. It created bizarre images of computer generated art. It didn't look human per say, but maybe they are waiting and are optimistic until it improves.

    So, it's math, not art? But what if a poetry magazine publishes it. Is it poetry then?

    Is an algorithm math? Or is it just a set of directions, like a map?

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Robbie View Post
    Bullshit is poetry, presented in a logical manner, all bullshit makes great poetry...if you can avoid the stench.
    If bullshit is poetry, Is poetry bullshit?

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