Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sports Mechanics: 'RoboScribe' Grapples With Play-by-Play Lingo

GREENSBORO, NC - MARCH 19:  Wayne Ellington th...Image by Getty Images via @daylifeStatSheet, a three-year-old North Carolina company whose Web site provides statistical analysis for several sports has ginned up its statistics software to generate articles about college basketball games, The New York Times reports.

Fans used to visiting www.StatSheet.com to get the numbers breakdown on Nascar, college football, college basketball and the like now can click onto the StatSheet Network, which offers separate Web sites for each of the 345 NCAA Division 1 men's basketball teams. Once there, thanks to "automated content," the fans can read entirely software-generated write-ups of the team's games. Every team's StatSheet Web site has its own Web address (http://statsheet.com/#websites).

The article-producing software consists of template sentences and a database of roughly 5,000 phrases and numbers. The software has problems creating complex sentences, just like most sportswriters, but drinks less.

As if journalists didn't face enough challenges in this job market.

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