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Programming Books It's funny.  Laugh.

Programmers Share 188 Computer-Generated Novels On GitHub (thenewstack.io) 49

An anonymous reader writes: Last month 188 entries turned up on GitHub in an event challenging programmers to write computer code to generate 50,000-word novels. "The 'novel' is defined however you want," wrote the organizer for National Novel-Generating Month. "It could be 50,000 repetitions of the word 'meow.' It could literally grab a random novel from Project Gutenberg. It doesn't matter, as long as it's 50k+ words." Novels were submitted as Issues on the event's GitHub repository, and this year saw intriguing titles like "The Hero with Arbitrarily-Many Faces," "THE CYBERWHALE – a cyberpunk version of Moby Dick," and "Terms and Conditions – a Legal Thriller."
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Programmers Share 188 Computer-Generated Novels On GitHub

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  • by ls671 ( 1122017 ) on Monday December 21, 2015 @12:24AM (#51156855) Homepage

    Next let's make a movie, it might beat some actual movies too.

  • by JustAnotherOldGuy ( 4145623 ) on Monday December 21, 2015 @12:26AM (#51156857)

    If the only requirement is that it has to be "at least 50,000 words long", why not just submit a copy of the dictionary and call it done?

    • How about a bunch of Trump quotes. The book would be huuuuuge!

    • by Anonymous Coward

      The point would be an interesting solution that fulfills the requirement. Especially something that a human could read without clawing out their eyes. Plus you have to share the computer code that you used to generate the novel. (Copy file "novel.txt." into "compunovel.txt" -or- while i ++ 50,001; book+=" meow";

      You could submit that, and some people may, but you're not going to receive much attention for doing so.

    • That'll get the creative juices flowing!

    • To those brought up on the 'meet the requirements, then you're done' ethos, it probably doesn't make sense. I guess here the aim is for the programmers to challenge themselves, and each other. By having a ridiculously low bar, you can ensure you produce at least one thing which 'qualifies' with ease. Thus there is no risk of not being able to produce anything good enough: the negative feedback one gets from fear of failure can be a real obstacle to learning and creativity sometimes.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Any monkey can write a novel. But it takes creativity to write a good novel.

    Better challenge would be to write good mad libs. Something like that would be NP complete. You know, something for the day when holodeck fantasy simulation becomes good enough to be interesting.

    • by rsborg ( 111459 )

      Any monkey can write a novel. But it takes creativity to write a good novel.

      Better challenge would be to write good mad libs. Something like that would be NP complete. You know, something for the day when holodeck fantasy simulation becomes good enough to be interesting.

      Ah, but the good ideas could be focus-group tested with editors as your focus group.

      Kimosabe, you're not thinking like a megacorp or VC-funded startup! Just imagine when the script editor role is outsourced to many people - you run dozens of scripts by many editors, and choose the winner(s) to be sent to another focus group of consumers^Wfilm watchers. Then you pick the ones that win and spend money on them.

      Or better yet, you can splice them together to make an even better movie! Just think of the profit

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Markov chain generator, seeded from whatever Project Gutenberg books you can find. Makes a nice Pride & Prejudice and Tale of Two Cities crossover, where everyone is in the same room doing trying to figure out how to marry, while observing Jaques killing the same person twice. ...

    Okay, just picked a random "novel" [github.com], and it reads more like a CRPG combat output log rather than an actual story. So instead of announcing that the contest is over and the books can be read, it's probably better to show which o

  • printf(" [insert text of your favorite novel here] ");

    • That would never work. The first time there was a quote in the text it would be game over; the code wouldn't even compile.
  • It's not a novel and it's not exactly "computer generated" but I do love the chicken paper [isotropic.org] and it's later presentation at a meeting [youtube.com]
  • 186 (Score:4, Funny)

    by Hognoxious ( 631665 ) on Monday December 21, 2015 @07:38AM (#51157683) Homepage Journal

    186 of them were by APK.

  • Novels were submitted as Issues on the event's GitHub repository, and this year saw intriguing titles like "The Hero with Arbitrarily-Many Faces," "THE CYBERWHALE – a cyberpunk version of Moby Dick," and "Terms and Conditions – a Legal Thriller."

    Wake me up when it generates "Lorelai and Rory: When The Love Goes A Little Too Far".

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