Technology giant is training a ‘bonkbuster bot’ to write adult fiction

by L&D06 May 2016
E. L. James had better watch out.

The 50 Shades of Grey author could well be facing some stiff competition, and from a Google-trained robot, no less.

For the past few months, the multinational technology company has been flooding an AI engine with raunchy text in the hope that it will learn to write adult fiction.

The robot has been devouring text from a wide range of steamy romance fiction, with titles like Unconditional Love, Ignited, Fatal Desire, and Jacked Up.
 
In fact, the so-called ‘bonkbuster bot’ has read more than 2,800 romance novels and has already learnt how to write its own sentences.

The researchers believe the training could be a great way of enhancing the company’s technology with personality by teaching the neural networks more conversational language skills.

"It’s quite sexy. It’s very imaginative,” Google software engineer Andrew Dai was quoted as saying by BuzzFeed News.

"Hopefully with this work, and future work, it can be more conversational, or can have a more varied tone, or style, or register.”

Dai added that the reason why romance novels are good training material is that all the stories have a similar plot.

“Girl falls in love with boy, boy falls in love with a different girl, romance, tragedy,” said Dai.

Therefore, the AI can detect sentences that contain related meanings and pick up a more nuanced understanding of language overall. 

Whatever the outcome of the ‘bonkbuster bot’ experiment, it’s yet another example of how artificial intelligence could be replacing tasks and roles typically filled by humans.

Indeed, a recent report by the Committee for the Economic Development of Australia (CEDA) has predicted that up to 40% of jobs have a moderate to high likelihood of disappearing in the next 10 to 15 years as a result of technological advancement.

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