A robot journalist made its debut in a Chinese daily on Thursday with a 300 characters-long article written in just a second, scientists say. The article, published in the Guangzhou-based Southern Metropolis Daily, focused on the Spring Festival travel rush. Its author, Xiao Nan, took only a second to finish writing the piece and is able to write both short stories and longer reports, according to Wan Xiaojun, a professor at Peking University who leads the team studying and developing such robots.
“When compared with the staff reporters, Xiao Nan has a stronger data analysis capacity and is quicker at writing stories,” he said. “But it does not mean intelligent robots will soon be able to completely replace reporters,” Xiaojun was quoted as saying by ‘China Daily’. Such experiments were creating unease among the staff of the state-run media outlets as they might lose their jobs in the long run.
At present, robots are unable to conduct face-to-face interviews, cannot respond intuitively with follow-up questions and do not have the ability to select the news angle from an interview or conversation, Xiaojun said. “But robots will be able to act as a supplement, helping newspapers and related media, as well as editors and reporters,” he said.
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