A book, published in 1984, which was supposedly the first ever completely written by a computer. Mostly little poems, clearly tweaked by human hand. The software which generated it was called Racter and is still held up as a model of early AI. A sample poem follows:

More than iron, more than lead, more than gold I need electricity.
I need it more than I need pork or lettuce or cucumber.
I need it for my dreams.

Fair use rules should allow me one more aphorism. Racter opines that

Reflections are images of tarnished aspirations.

Which sounds pretty good until you consider that it doesn't mean anything.


The Policeman's Beard is Half Constructed
Computer prose and poetry by Racter
A Bizarre and Fantastic Journey into the Mind of a Machine
Illustrations by Joan Hall
Introduction by William Chamberlain
Warner Software Warner Books 1984
ISBN 0-446-38051-2

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