More On Computer-Authored Journalism

Many of the news articles you read are actually auto generated by artificial intelligence programs. In fact, robot- authored articles are slated to hit 1 billion. So the odds are you have actually have read one.

Here is an excerpt from the article “You’ll Be Sorry When the Robot Journalists Take Over.”

“Algorithms may be good at crunching numbers and putting them in some kind of context, but journalists are good at noticing things no one else has. They’re good at asking annoying questions. They’re nosy and persistent and willing to challenge authority to dig out a story. They’re good at provoking irritation, devastation, laughter or controversy.”

We at Alkek Library add that the problem with this is that robo-programs have to have finite numbers of rules built into the programming. They are unable to react changes or nuances in perception, values or new situations. The odds are pretty high the machines will miss something.

Wikipedia Hoaxes News Roundup

Here are some recent articles documenting maliciously wrong Wikipedia information, and even some articles about entirely fictitious entities. In many cases, the wrong information stayed on Wikipedia for years and was cited by other sources. Food for thought if you are using Wikipedia.

I Accidentally Started a Wikipedia Hoax

The 10 Biggest Hoaxes In  Wikipedia’s First 10 Years

Read About the Infamous Nonexistent Battle That Stayed on Wikipedia for Five Years

Wikipedia’s own entry on Wikipedia Hoaxes (yes, we know)

 

February Library eNews Is Live!

We’re excited to present the February issue of Library eNews, featuring services and resources to serve our Texas State community. This issue introduces our new 3D printing service, provides tips on career exploration and honing research skills, showcases our University Archivist and a poem written for Alkek’s “Tell Us Your Story” competition–and much more!

Library eNews (also accessible at https://digital.library.txstate.edu/handle/10877/5952)

Inside This Issue:

Director’s Message
My Home Away From Home

Tell Us Your Story Winner
“The Alkek Library,” by Isabel Briana Torres

Student Voices
How Alkek and a Hike Helped Me Find My Way

Step Up Your Research
Using Library Resources to Sharpen Research Skills

Meet Our Staff
Kristine Toma, University Archivist

News from the North
Faculty: Place Reserve Items at the RRC Library

Collections Spotlight
Calling All Art Lovers!

At the Wittliff Collections
Wittliff Exhibit Highlights Classic Texas Films

Texas State University History
Glimpses of University History on Flickr

Copyright Corner
Using Images from the Internet

 

 

Internet News Roundup: Robots Write Your News and Disappearing from Google Results

Another roundup of news explaining what you really see on the internet:

Artificial intelligence programs write news stories about everything, including business coverage of major American corporations.

Another article about robots writing news stories.

The British government is alleged to be posting fake comments, profiles on social media, and shutting down peaceful dissenting websites in order to support  its policies.

Google has removed negative media coverage of Merrill Lynch’s role in the financial crisis of 2008, under the recent “right to be forgotten” movement.

The Internet Wayback Machine Archives The Web

The Internet changes constantly. Ever wonder what happens to content that’s taken down?

A handful (but growing) number of organizations archive web content. A “picture” is taken every few days and stored.

The main Internet archive is called the Wayback Machine.

From The Economist:

The Wayback Machine’s inventor, Brewster Kahle, is an internet entrepreneur, philanthropist and computer whizz who helped design Mr Hillis’s ground-breaking Connection Machine in the 1980s. In 1996 he founded a non-profit organisation, the Internet Archive, to create a free internet library capable of storing a copy of every web page of every website ever to go online. The Wayback Machine allows users to view the library’s archived web pages as they appeared when published. Today the Internet Archive also includes texts, audio, moving images and software. At the last count, its collection contained more than 150 billion items.

Search The Wayback Machine Here

Even though we have the Wayback Machine, it is not a perfect solution and does not capture all of the web. Here’s a critique of our current storage methods of the web.