50,000 repetitions of the word "meow"
November 8, 2014 3:36 PM   Subscribe

NanoGenmo asks users to spend the month of November writing code that generates a novel of 50k+ words. Highlights so far include Seraphs, based on the Voynich Manuscript.
posted by eotvos (23 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite

 
I hope someone one else is writing code that will read the generated novels. I have no idea what this would actually entail, but I need the symmetry.
posted by benito.strauss at 3:38 PM on November 8, 2014 [8 favorites]


that's pretty much what's already happening with captchas.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 3:47 PM on November 8, 2014 [3 favorites]


No idea why I said "users" rather than "participants." But, I suppose everyone uses something.
posted by eotvos at 3:51 PM on November 8, 2014 [2 favorites]


Seraphs is absolutely brilliant.
posted by Nelson at 3:51 PM on November 8, 2014


Seraphs is fun, but it's missing Grove words at the beginning of paragraphs, has doubled letters which rarely occur except for {e, i}, has {i} groups at the beginning of words, no {q} whatsoever, and has very few {ch, sh}, among other issues. Words like {skettr} are just utterly unVoynichlike.

Or, in short, it needs more {qokeedy daiin}.
posted by Thing at 3:53 PM on November 8, 2014 [3 favorites]


Buffalo buffalo buffalo.
Buffalo buffalo? Buffalo buffalo buffalo?
Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo.

Computer generated single word texts could easily have grammatical structures too complex for a human reader to follow without drawing diagrams. It would be pretty sweet.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 4:03 PM on November 8, 2014 [3 favorites]


Funnily enough, I already have the code to do this - unfortunately its in my brain (and appears to have been written by someone else.) I am at 20,794 words for Nano!! It is going really well, too, much better than the last two years plotless messes - its almost like I had a code upgrade in the summer or something.

Good Luck (to anyone doing this) for Nano GenMo2014
posted by marienbad at 4:09 PM on November 8, 2014 [2 favorites]


For this challenge, I took the approach of fully simulating a human brain, but when I tried to get the simulation to generate a novel, it wrote the opening section, then procrastinated for the rest of the month.
posted by Salvor Hardin at 4:29 PM on November 8, 2014 [16 favorites]


Since the definition of "novel" is rather open ended I have the code and data to generate endless Kantian and Heideggerian philosophy interspersed with rather grammatically complex insults. I just have to create the initial condition and then let it run. Generative phrase structure grammars rule!
posted by njohnson23 at 5:01 PM on November 8, 2014


How Seraphs was generated
posted by dfan at 5:02 PM on November 8, 2014 [3 favorites]


generate endless Kantian and Heideggerian philosophy interspersed with rather grammatically complex insults

I remember the old Mac System 7 Kant Generator program. Good times. The insults must have been in the Platinum version. Or maybe there was a Schopenhauer Generator.
posted by thelonius at 5:38 PM on November 8, 2014


50,000 repetitions of the word "meow"

Has anyone submitted a Hodor generator yet?

Computer generated single word texts could easily have grammatical structures too complex for a human reader to follow without drawing diagrams.

Yes! Seventh grade English finally pays off!
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:01 PM on November 8, 2014


I was just writing a FPP about Seraph. Glad I found this first!
posted by moonmilk at 6:13 PM on November 8, 2014 [1 favorite]


Thanks! I wasn't going to be satisfied unless someone bean-plated its Voynichness.
posted by nev at 6:49 PM on November 8, 2014 [7 favorites]


Oops, I feel a little awkward now.

But I think I've identified the problem. The EVA transcription that you've used doesn't map to the right characters for the font. For example, EVA {p} is accessed in the font by the letter "g", while the font letter "q" gives the EVA string {iim}. I believe the font uses a modification of the Currier transcription.

Here's how EVA should be mapped to the font:

EVA : Letter
{a} : a
{o} : o
{y} : 9
{i} : i
{e} : c

{k} : h
{t} : k
{p} : g
{f} : f

{d} : 8
{s} : s
{g} : *

{l} : e
{r} : y
{m} : p
{n} : N

{q} : 4
{x} : |

Also, these EVA combinations must be mapped together:

{ch} : 1
{sh} : 2

{ckh} : H
{cth} : K
{cph} : G
{cfh} : F

That should make things look a lot better. Also, if you instruct your program to select words beginning with {p, f} to begin a page, and words beginning with {p, f, k, t} to begin a paragraph, it will look even more convincing.
posted by Thing at 7:16 PM on November 8, 2014 [4 favorites]


Thing: That is awesome; I will totally fix it.
posted by nev at 7:31 PM on November 8, 2014 [2 favorites]


You have cat to be kitten me right meow.
posted by clvrmnky at 6:47 AM on November 9, 2014


Patch complete; thank you Thing! I updated the example images in the repository's README to match the corrected output as well.
posted by nev at 1:10 PM on November 9, 2014 [3 favorites]


That's the first Metafilter comment I've ever seen that was nearly a complete pull request.
posted by Nelson at 1:31 PM on November 9, 2014 [11 favorites]


That's looking fantastic!

Now print a copy and send to:

Dr Gordon Rugg
Keele University
Keele
NEWCASTLE-UNDER-LYME
Staffordshire
England

I'm sure he'll be over the moon to receive it.
posted by Thing at 2:32 PM on November 9, 2014 [2 favorites]


Seraphs is tremendous beyond all expectation - congratulations, nev!
posted by curious.jp at 3:38 PM on November 9, 2014 [3 favorites]


I knew I'd seen that BASIC program before.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 6:02 PM on November 9, 2014


For this challenge, I took the approach of fully simulating a human brain....
posted by Salvor Hardin


Counterintuitively, it may be easier to simulate the aggregate effect of billions of human brains than to simulate a single brain.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 8:29 AM on November 10, 2014


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