Robot sports reporter

John Moe Nov 29, 2010

But how does he get grotesquely overweight and suck up to spoiled athletes if he’s a robot? I’m sure they’re working on that.

The New York Times has a story that, if you’re a journalist, you probably find depressing. StatSheet is a small company that has made software that can generate sports stories based on the statistics of the game.

“There are at least 200 Division I schools that the large sports media companies give no attention to,” says Mr. Allen at StatSheet. “Once we have the algorithm in place, there’s no cost to adding the Lamars and Elons to the Dukes and U.N.C.’s.”
Mr. Allen explains that his story-writing software does not perform linguistic analysis; it just uses template sentences and a database of phrases that numbers about 5,000 for now.

Weirdest part: the stories are biased. If two teams play each other, two different stories are generated, one appearing on each team’s site. The winning team’s story gloats and celebrates, the losing team’s sounds concerned but hopeful things will turn around.

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