Wednesday, February 20, 2019

I Told You So

At some point I expected the robots to begin replacing the talking heads employed in their thousands by every media outlet in the world. At least the TV outlets, although I don't see why internet outlets that feature podcasts couldn't do the same thing. I know I have a face made for radio and a voice made for the keyboard.. Now a Chinese TV station has a cute female news reader in what  might be advanced beta test mode. She is the latest step after they put forth a couple of male versions that were reportedly less advanced.

The day when Kent Brockman had to sit behind a fancy desk and try to look sincere while reading bullshit are coming to an end. Now an AI will seem to sit behind the desk and rattle off the most outrageous stories without ever cracking a smile or expressing any emotion at all. Of course that feature can be added later. A contemptuous sneer or a look of swelling pride and admiration will soon be programmable depending on the story or the political party of the subject.

This can be done in a messy cube farm by former newspaper writers who took the advice and learned to code or more likely learned to use the software GUI. No fancy studios will be required, and interviews with real people will be conducted remotely, cutting back and forth from the perfectly dressed "news anchor" and the interviewee, wherever he or she happens to be when the interview happens. Think of the money the media outlets will save not having to keep celebrities on the payroll.

Sitting in a bar at 5 PM watching the news, people can make a drinking game of listening for mispronunciations of words resulting from the autocorrect function of the text writers computers putting a wrong word into the script.

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