Engadget: Researchers digitize writing with cheap, touch-sensitive paper. “Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University have developed a paper that can track touch, which, among other applications, could lead to an inexpensive way to digitize writing. They’re presenting their work this week at the ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems.”
USC Libraries: USC Libraries Digitizing 10,200 Hamlin Garland Letters. “The National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) is generously supporting a project by the USC Libraries to digitize a trove of 10,200 letters between writer Hamlin Garland and important figures in late 19th and early 20th century American life. Once the project is complete, these letters will be freely accessible online via the USC Digital Library and Digital Public Library of America. Garland is best known for his short-story collection Main-Travelled Roads (1891) exploring Midwestern farm life, his autobiography A Son of the Middle Border (1917), and his biography of Civil War general and U.S. president Ulysses S. Grant. Garland played a leading role in conceptualizing American literary realism and earned a Pulitzer Prize in 1922 for A Daughter of the Middle Border.”
Zach Whalen: A Python Script That Writes 800-Page Children’s Books. “You may have heard of NaNoWriMo — National Novel Writing Mo — which is an even where aspiring authors attempt to start and finish a 50,000-word novel in the month of November. NaNoGenMo is a similar event that simply challenges aspiring authors to write code that will generate a 50,000 word novel. This blog post is the story of my NaNoGenMo effort for 2017, which culminated in The Several Houses of Brian, Spencer, Liam, Victoria, Brayden, Vincent, and Alex, an 800-page novel (PDF download) generated by a Python script. I’m sharing this because I’m pretty happy with the outcome, and I learned a lot about Python in the process.” This is a little outside the ResearchBuzz beam, but I loved reading about it, and figure anyone working in AI can combine this work with AI and have a great time.
China Daily: New translation database promotes Chinese literature overseas . “President Xi Jinping’s report at the 19th CPC National Congress attached great importance to the construction of China’s soft power and cultural confidence, which required a large number of eminent artistic figures to see literature and art thrive. To support contemporary Chinese literary talents and elevate the global influence of Chinese literature, the Chinese Culture Translation and Studies Support Network (CCTSS) and Selected Stories magazine jointly initiated an international database of Chinese writers and works in Beijing, Jan 17.” I could not find an URL for this and didn’t have much luck Googling – I’m probably searching in the wrong language. Thus I’m not sure if this is a completed resource or an initiative launch.
Chronicle of Higher Education: How Twitter Hooks Up Students With Ghostwriters. “It used to be that if students wanted someone to write an essay for them, they had to track someone down themselves. But these days an overwhelmed or desperate student can unintentionally summon legions of eager essay ghostwriters by merely venting frustration on Twitter.”
Hamilton: 1,000th Essay Entered into American Prison Writing Archive . “Earlier this month, the Digital Humanities Initiative, better known as DHi, and Doran Larson, the Walcott-Bartlett Chair of Ethics and Christian Evidences, celebrated the entry of the 1,000th letter into the DHi’s American Prison Writing Archive (APWA). Initiated in 2009 when Larson put out a call for essays from incarcerated people and prison staff about what life was like inside, the archive has grown to more than 1,200 responses in paper form and more than 1,100 online.”
Quartz: MIT researchers trained AI to write horror stories based on 140,000 Reddit posts. “Sometimes the scariest place to be is your own mind. Or Reddit at night. Shelley is an AI program that generates the beginnings of horror stories, and it’s trained by original horror fiction posted to Reddit. Designed by researchers from MIT Media Lab, Shelley launched on Twitter on Oct. 21.”