Chinese robot 'reporter' makes its publishing debut

Updated 2017-01-19 11:34:01 CGTN

Xiao Nan, a robot "reporter" made by a Chinese professor released its maiden work on a daily tabloid in the city of Guangzhou.

The 300-character story covering the Spring Festival travel rush was published in the Guangzhou-based Southern Metropolis Daily on Wednesday.

Xiao finished the piece within a second, and is able to write both short stories and longer reports, said Wan Xiaojun, the professor at Peking University leading the team that develops these robots.

"When compared to the reporters on staff, Xiao has a stronger capacity for data analysis and is quicker at writing stories," the professor said. "But that does not mean intelligent robots will soon be able to completely replace reporters."

According to Wan, robots are still unable to conduct face-to-face interviews and respond intuitively with follow-up questions. They also do not have the ability to select the news angle from an interview or conversation.

However, Wan holds an optimistic attitude towards the new technology. "Robots will soon be able to act as a supplement, helping newspapers and related media outlets, as well as editors and reporters," he said, adding that he was working alongside the Southern Metropolis Daily to establish a special laboratory to study and develop media robots.

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