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HPA 2018: Imagining the Future of AI and Storytelling in Media

At the HPA Tech Retreat Wednesday breakfast roundtables, program director Yves Bergquist led a discussion on the work he is doing at ETC on storytelling and artificial intelligence. “We’re doing a lot of research around how to create a more semantic understanding of narrative structures and create a machine-readable understanding of storytelling,” he explained. HPA Tech Retreat regular Jim Burger, an attorney who sat at the table, engaged in a conversation with Bergquist about the copyright infringement potential of AI and storytelling.

Bergquist described how the basis of his AI research is that, “stories have a very algorithmic structure.” “Our brain being unable to represent of the complexity of the universe compresses it into scripts and reductions,” he said, adding that we are culturally biased towards specific pre-existing stories. “We do a lot of work about how to recognize the various semantic structures of stories and try to understand which ones perform better.”

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