The StatSheet site for Ohio State men's basketball. One recent story on the site had 10 sentences and 156 words - written entirely by software.
Only human writers can distill a heap of sports statistics into a compelling story. Or so we human writers like to think, writes Randall Storss at nytimes.com.
StatSheet, a Durham, N.C., company that serves up sports statistics in monster-size portions, thinks otherwise. The company, with nine employees, is working to endow software with the ability to turn game statistics into articles about college basketball games.
Established in 2007, StatSheet.com provides statistical analysis of college football and basketball, Nascar and other sports. It dices data in more ways than any fan could possibly absorb. But charts, graphs and rankings alone cannot replace words that tell a story. We humans love stories; a craving for narrative seems part of our nature.
This month, StatSheet unveiled StatSheet Network, made up of separate Web sites for each of the 345 N.C.A.A. Division I men’s basketball teams. Beyond statistics galore, each site has what the company calls “automated content,” stories written entirely by software, including write-ups of the team’s games, past and future. With a joking wink, StatSheet’s founder, Robbie Allen, refers to these sites as the “Robot Army.”
Read more here.