Automated essay writing

Copysmith is a web-based AI writing tool that deploys an extensive database of texts to generate new content. The human writer provides a few key terms, a title or phrases relevant to their subject of interest. In response, the program offers up a selection of relevant short paragraphs. The writer selects from these to spur on the writing process. In fact the writer need write very little. You highlight bits of the text already generated for further additions by the system. The process turns writing into a continuous process of editing, as if looking over the shoulder and instructing a human writing assistant.

The program deploys GPT-3 neural network technology, which at its core processes information about the likelihood that certain words will occur adjacent to one another in a block of text. The GPT-3 neural network system is “pre-trained” on many thousands of existing texts. The GPT-3 developers have made these functions available to 3rd party developers who have in turn created applications. Copysmith is one such application.

I started a free seven-day trial at and created the following, through the incremental process I’ve just described and seeded by the title.

Cryptographic City

In a cryptographic city, citizens are able to securely communicate and conduct transactions without the fear of being monitored or spied on.

Many people live in cities around the world where there are no secrets and everything is open to government surveillance and censorship. In a cryptographic city even if an adversary wants to censor the communications between two parties they can’t without learning the private key of the communication channel.

In a cryptographic city there is no back door, no master key, no fire wall, no law enforcement agencies that have the ability to monitor and spy on the communications of citizens.

Cryptography-based communication platforms support services by which people can use self-driving vehicles and pay securely for parking, road tolls and even subsidised public transport with digital currency.

Architecture has a long established role in the cryptographic city, not least with the invention by the renaissance architect Leon Battista Alberti of the cipher wheel.

In the 19th century Sir James Fergusson, author of the 1876 work A History of Architecture in All Countries, noted that ‘in all ages and in all countries, the manufacturers of locks, locksmiths as they are called, have always held an important position in every community’. The history of the cryptographic city can be seen as a series of responses to the changing technologies of locks and the associated evolution of popular notions about their security.

I cut out sentences as the narrative developed, but added the sentence in italics. The reference to Fergusson is new to my thinking on the subject. The prose needs more work, and perhaps a punch line, but the content is convincing. I ran the text through Turnitin, the plagiarism detector software. It came up with a similarity index of 0.0. I also typed some phrases into Google search as a cross check. There’s lots about the history of cryptography, but nothing came up for “history of the cryptographic city.”

What if I know nothing about a subject? Can I bluff my way through the writing process. Does this scan? The questions in italics are my own. The Turnitin similarity score was again 0.0.

The rules of ice hockey

There are a few basic rules in ice hockey that all players must follow. These rules help to ensure that the game is played fairly and safely. The puck can only be played with a stick, and no other part of the body can touch it. Players are not allowed to hold, push, or check their opponents.The rules for the game were first called the “Canadian ice hockey rules” when adopted at Montreal in 1875, and the first game in Montreal was organized on 3 March 1875. The first set of rules were drafted in 1877 by a committee of three with one representative from each of the Montreal teams (the Victoria, Montreal Lacrosse, and Montreal Hockey clubs). These rules organized the game of ice hockey to a fashion that is recognizable today.

Why is ice-hockey so popular? No doubt about it. The NHL is the world’s best league for ice-hockey. It has the biggest stars and the best teams. And it does not just enjoy a big following in North America. It is also very popular in Europe. That’s because European ice-hockey players have learnt their trade in the NHL. They go there when they are still very young, so they can make it in the NHL when they are grown up.

What are the health risks for hockey players and spectators? As a primary contact sport, ice hockey poses many health risks for players and spectators alike. As with any contact sport, there is always the possibility of injury and of players injuring themselves on another player’s equipment or players injuring themselves when performing dangerous maneuvers. Some of the most common hockey related injuries include: strains, sprains, spasms and tears, concussions, ACL and MCL tears, and eye injuries.

See the two key articles in the Bibliography for descriptions of how GPT-3 works, as well as its potential impact, uses and misuses.


  • Brown, Tom B., Benjamin Mann, Nick Ryder, Melanie Subbiah, Jared Kaplan, Prafulla Dhariwal, Arvind Neelakantan, Pranav Shyam, Girish Sastry, Amanda Askell, Sandhini Agarwal, Ariel Herbert-Voss, Gretchen Krueger, Tom Henighan, Rewon Child, Aditya Ramesh, Daniel M. Ziegler, Jeffrey Wu, Clemens Winter, Christopher Hesse, Mark Chen, Eric Sigler, Mateusz Litwin, Scott Gray, Benjamin Chess, Jack Clark, Christopher Berner, Sam McCandlish, Alec Radford, Ilya Sutskever, and Dario Amodei. “Language models are few-shot learners.” Cornell University arXiv, 22 July. Accessed 2 June 2022.
  • Weinberg, Justin. “Philosophers On GPT-3 (updated with replies by GPT-3).” Daily Nous, 30 July. Accessed 2 Jun 2022.

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