Robots And Writing And Readers -- Oh My!

Disturbing news shook the book world lately, when it came out that robots have been authoring books and selling them at university-press prices on Amazon. It's as bad as you think: a software program that scours the internet for text (including Wikipedia) and shuffles the results into passable book form. Which doesn't sound particularly pleasant for the reader, tickled though I am by the title Saltine Cracker. (Sidebar: fifty-four dollars?!)

Above a page of black-and-white text, a red robot arm extends a mechanical limb with a pen attachment.

Besides Saltine Cracker, what else might robots be writing?

  • As I Lay Compiling: Southern robot Gothic.
  • 001100010011100100111000001101000000110100001010: for a hint, try this binary translator.
  • Fahrenheit 2750: the melting point of iron provides a title for this bleak dystopian masterpiece about vicious humans who destroy all mechanical intelligence they find.
  • The Technical Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: a clone of the great Victorian detective solves hi-tech crime alongside noted Jeopardy!-winning computer Watson.
  • Speaking of Watson, he's also written the classic robot self-help book, How to Win Game Shows and Decimate People.
  • The Brothers Kawasaki: three different models of robot built by the same inventor struggle to relate to one another.
  • I, Robot: now a compelling autobiography!
  • Aye, Robot: because robots are as susceptible as anyone to the lure of a good pirate story.
  • Bye, Robot: a love story with a tragic separation at the end.
  • Guy, Robot: a love story across taboo boundaries.
  • My, Robot!: slapstick robot romantic comedy in the style of P. G. Wodehouse.
  • Die, Robot!: robot thriller in the style of Stephen King.
  • Lie, Robot: robot courtroom thriller in the style of John Grisham.
  • Spy, Robot: robot espionage thriller in the style of John Le Carré.