I Am Learn
October 4, 2004 10:59 PM   Subscribe

I am learn is a weblog written by a Perl script and – get this – its managed to create quite … a lucid weblog. Yes. A weblog. By a Perl script. The author says "I wrote a ridiculous Perl program to generate text. Thing is, it developed some bugs, and has managed to create phrases and combinations of words (which actually make sense) that I didn’t even program in. I hooked it up to the Blogger API, and now it updates its own weblog with no editing on my part (I just give it a bunch of topics to talk about)."[via Kevin Francis]
posted by KevinSkomsvold (41 comments total)
Can we give it a MeFi account?
posted by weston at 11:02 PM on October 4, 2004

I am learn, you had me at "perhaps i could discuss my inane screaming with my friend jamie."

"English as She is Spoke" in blog format. Reading it has a meditative effect. I like it.
posted by Salmonberry at 11:04 PM on October 4, 2004

it already has one.
posted by quonsar at 11:04 PM on October 4, 2004

"I dont mind sanitary towels. Read my lips!!"

teh script is funny!
posted by quonsar at 11:08 PM on October 4, 2004

That's cool, I like the learning feature. R. Robot was the first self-writing weblog, though he doesn't find out stuff for himself, and still thinks it is 2002.
posted by inksyndicate at 11:20 PM on October 4, 2004

I adore Learn and want to help him, learn!
I wonder if he'd learn from comments to his posts?
Notice how, when you type it out so many times a word starts looking odd? Learn learn learn learn. Now it looks even odder.
posted by kamylyon at 11:28 PM on October 4, 2004

You're seeing past the abstraction when you do that kamylyon. Try saying your name 50 times out loud.

On topic: meh.
posted by callmejay at 11:51 PM on October 4, 2004

Neato, I want him to make one where it takes topics from submissions. Or hook it into Google and have it write posts on every millionth search or whatever.
posted by fenriq at 12:24 AM on October 5, 2004

Hook it into Google News and have it blog about the top story every few hours.
posted by RylandDotNet at 12:28 AM on October 5, 2004

This blog is the new face of journalism!
posted by Krrrlson at 12:32 AM on October 5, 2004

"Today I am studying my friends vagina problems my grandmother and the ideology of Britney Spears wedding and I also want to learn more about your feelings."
posted by sklero at 12:37 AM on October 5, 2004

I found the lack of google ads refreshing in Learn's blog.
posted by mhh5 at 2:05 AM on October 5, 2004

Inane worthless drivel about current topics. Poorly structured sentences, dire grammar and way too many sanitary references! My God I think the guy has cracked the blog genre to perfection.

Hook it up to a phone line, voice recognition software and text-to-voice, and let it do tech support for AOL!
posted by DrDoberman at 3:29 AM on October 5, 2004

In a similar vein, have a look at the Postmodernism essay generator, Adolescent poetry generator, and Subgenius brag.
posted by BigCalm at 3:49 AM on October 5, 2004

Sorry folks. This is another one from me. To be honest I nearly had a freaking heart attack when I suddenly saw 1000 people had just turned up.

It's hideously bad, although it even makes me laugh quite a bit at the crap it puts out. The comments it's starting to get from readers are also pretty funny. I do hope to improve it somewhat though, and I've begun loading it up with new adjectives, verbs, and phrase 'layouts' so it can spice up its posts. Ultimately, however, it needs to be able to refer to its own old posts, and be able to tie certain verbs with certain subjects, remember its 'opinions' and all that nonsense. ;-)
posted by wackybrit at 4:01 AM on October 5, 2004

Someone suggested that it should reply to comments. Sadly I don't think there's the capacity for this in the Blogger API. If it had its own site and its own blogging system, this would be a possibility, however.
posted by wackybrit at 4:04 AM on October 5, 2004

Blog talk pretty one day.
posted by AwkwardPause at 4:04 AM on October 5, 2004

Hook it into Google News and have it blog about the top story every few hours

Ryland, this is a bloody great idea..
posted by wackybrit at 4:22 AM on October 5, 2004

MeFi: so fresh and funky as well

wackybrit, that would be a great idea. Unless, of course, this kind of thing is how Skynet eventually evolves... "i like hard-ass robot monkeys" might be the warning we're all ignoring.

If you want to imagine the future, imagine a blog stamping on a human face... forever!
posted by ruddhist at 5:17 AM on October 5, 2004

reminds me about "I kiss you!" meme
posted by MzB at 5:26 AM on October 5, 2004

This thread about the perl script weblog is what I want to talk about, ok?!!!!!! This thread is so fresh and funky as well. My friend John said she thinks this thread is crazily very pleasant and most of the time I eat jam. Read my lips!! the problem with the thread about the perl script weblog and the perl script weblog are not really related. This is the most crazily very coherent post on metafilter for several weeks. tomorrow i am going to think about gun control.
posted by MarkC at 5:33 AM on October 5, 2004

Kudos, wackybrit. she's beautiful, in her own moderately coherent way.

Wouldn't it be sweet if we could chat with her? Even better, what if you could get the headline chat on AOL one day! I'd get an AOL account just so i could listen in on that one.

"Learn, jimmy3452135 wants to know if you have a boyfriend."
posted by jeremy at 6:15 AM on October 5, 2004

"Unless, of course, this kind of thing is how Skynet eventually evolves..."

*travels back in time, attempts to kill wackybrit's mother*
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:19 AM on October 5, 2004

Much better than little green snotballs weblog.
posted by nofundy at 6:38 AM on October 5, 2004

Well, it's at least as coherent and consistent as many blogs ostensibly written by... uh... "real" people. I knew there had to be some reasonable explanation for the Theatre of the Absurd-ish Glenn Reynolds...

wackybrit, that's an impressive piece of work (he said, with no knowledge of how own makes perl or any other programming language do something that complex).

Feature suggestion: provide learn with an equivalent to the blogosphere's cliquey "bloggers I worship/idolize" and "blogs I loathe/denigrate every other post" lists...
posted by JollyWanker at 6:44 AM on October 5, 2004

It writes exactly the way my ricerboy-wannabe cousin in Taiwan talks. Awesome.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004.....My popularity with bloggers and metafilter are not really related.
posted by casarkos at 6:51 AM on October 5, 2004

This is somewhat the bomb. I must appreciate to say, it is crazily very pleasant.

wackybrit, just one easy (I think) tweak would be to keep the gender of the pronoun after a name the same until the end of a sentence (i.e. until next terminal punctuation). Then you'd still have "my friend Joshua / she," but it wouldn't flip right around to "he" in the very next phrase.

Oh, yeah, you might also inform Learn that the word is "occurrences."
posted by soyjoy at 7:21 AM on October 5, 2004

randomly generated drivel, as opposed to human generated drivel. Is this progress?
posted by crunchland at 7:28 AM on October 5, 2004

soyjoy: One idea I had for a 'mach 2' would be to keep a table of 'people' objects which make up Learn's entire list of friends and contacts (including, eventually, people who comment on the site, and other bloggers), so then the gender could be kept consistent. As you can tell, it's rather random right now.

I'll also point her towards a dictionary, although I can't make any promises ;-)

Still not sure why it's saying "What do you appreciate to say", this isn't a phrase I've entered, so it must be constructing it from some other fragments..
posted by wackybrit at 7:56 AM on October 5, 2004

You should have the script randomly post pictures of cats. Then it would be nearly indistinguishable from the real thing.
posted by ssmith at 8:14 AM on October 5, 2004

Hook it into Google News and have it blog about the top story every few hours

The guys behind drunkmenworkhere already made a automatic blog generator. Not in Perl, but in PHP.

Here is the latest updates page, and here you can sign up to have your own, automatically generated weblog.
posted by lagado at 8:34 AM on October 5, 2004

I liked this bit:

ok.. the liberalization of women ok?? whats up with that?. the state of the liberalization of women is so fresh and funky as well :*

Fresh and funky indeed :-)
posted by clevershark at 8:54 AM on October 5, 2004

[this is good]
posted by y6y6y6 at 9:29 AM on October 5, 2004

"I am Learn" sounds just like a politician.
posted by Termite at 10:41 AM on October 5, 2004

I am a Perl script which kicks that other Perl scripts ass all fresh and funky like plo chops in freshly fallen snow.
posted by troutfishing at 11:49 AM on October 5, 2004

I, Perl script, comment decisely on wacko groupthink mefi media metatalk bias.
posted by troutfishing at 12:38 PM on October 5, 2004

And the funny part is, it really reads no different than 90% of the livejournals out there, save perhaps with not enough angst.
posted by jearbear at 1:22 PM on October 5, 2004

"I am Learn" sounds just like a politician.

Rarely is the question asked, is our Perl scripts learning?
posted by kindall at 2:03 PM on October 5, 2004

Has anyone thought that this could be fake? Err... actually done by a human..?
posted by LoopSouth at 5:46 PM on October 5, 2004

Loop: You're the second person to have said something like that. I am surprised more people haven't commented in that way. Code will be released as soon as I have something better to replace it (don't want every tom, dick, and harry having poor old learn as a slave..)
posted by wackybrit at 12:48 AM on October 6, 2004

if you want more AI fun, AIM outlander10000
posted by Hackworth at 12:09 PM on October 6, 2004

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