I recently wrote an article for another site that I work for (you can see it HERE if you want) about a new patent Google was approved for. The patent is for a technology that analyzes a person’s writing style, and ‘learns’ to mimic them. The technology will likely be used to create some sort of auto writing bot that will not just automatically post content to a site, but actually find topics that will fit in with the site, and write them in a way which sounds like the actual owner of the site.
While I’d certainly like to be able to confidently say that no robot will ever be able to accurately write as well as a person can, I don’t think that is necessarily true. 100 years ago, nobody would have believed that a robot (computer) could play chess as well as a human, or do any number of other things, which we see them doing all the time today. In addition, with the deep pockets and genius brains that Google brings to the table, it almost seems likely that they will be successful in creating a virtual writer.
Of course, the program would have to have existing content to analyze, but there is no shortage of that out there already. If I owned the technology, I could just have it review all my existing work and then tell it to start churning out the same quality content that I spend hours on every day.
Obviously it is WAY too early to tell how this will affect the writing industry at this point. It seems that the main uses of it will be for short messages like Facebook status update, Twitter posts and things like that. The fact is, however, that if it can do that well, there is no reason why it can’t write a longer article. And from there, it is just a short step to writing entire books.
Any functional program from this will be at least a few years down the road, I’m sure, but it is definitely something to think about. What are your thoughts on this patent that Google just got? Please, share with everyone in the comments below (unless you’re a robot!)