Press for Poem/1

15.45, Thursday 25 Jan 2024

I’m using this post to track press and media for Poem/1, my AI rhyming clock.

Although there hasn’t been any! Only for the prototype. So I’m listing all of last year’s press, and then I’ll update this post in the future if required. (When required! When required!)

In case you missed my latest shilling, I’m manufacturing this ridiculous clock, Kickstarter gods be willing:

That industrial design update also includes my convoluted theories on AI green… Have you noticed that the canonical colour of AI is green? i.e. the USB-C cable in the box is green. Folks this is what we call Design.

Media for the prototype

Oldest first.

This clock uses ChatGPT to rhyme / and also help relay the time
The Verge (17 Mar 2023)

Short piece, same day as my original tweet.

It’s the creation of Matt Webb, who shared it on Twitter. We love it.

This AI clock uses ChatGPT to generate tiny poems that tell the time
The Verge (4 Apr 2023)

Long feature with interview.

It uses ChatGPT to create a short two-line rhyme that also tells the time for every minute of the day. It’s incredible and we want one.

Also a turn of phrase from me:

“Clockwork means you get precision drift; AI-work means you get hallucination drift.”

35 Ways Real People Are Using A.I. Right Now
The New York Times (13 Apr 2023)

Prominent mention in longer article.

11. Build a clock that gives you a new poem every minute.

“Yes, programmatic A.I. is useful,” he said. “But more than that, it’s enormous fun.”

Man claims his AI clock generates a new poem every minute using ChatGPT
Hindustan Times (12 Apr 2023)

Delightfully sceptical.

The man took to Twitter to share a post claiming that his AI-powered clock generates a poem every minute using ChatGPT.

A man’s post about creating an AI-based clock that uses ChatGPT to generate poems has gone viral. …

Man Develops AI Clock That Generates A New Poem Every Minute Using ChatGPT
NDTV (15 Apr 2023)

Cites The Verge.

Now, a man has created an AI clock that uses ChatGPT to create tiny poems to tell time.

Funny Old World
Private Eye (no. 1597, 5 May 2023)

Print only. Reproduces the NDTV story as sent in by a reader. (I posted it on Insta, appearing in the Eye is a career high.)

SPOTTED a bizarre but true news story from your corner of the globe? … lb20 paid for all entries used.

Inside OpenAI, the Architect of ChatGPT, featuring Mira Murati
Bloomberg Originals (16 Jun 2023)

Appears in video interview with Mira Murati, OpenAI CTO, in The Circuit with Emily Chang on YouTube (3m05s).

My clock tweet is the first illustration for this first question:

Chang: Did that surprise you? I mean what you your reaction to the world’s reaction?

Murati: We were surprised by how much it captured the imaginations of the general public and how much people just loved spending time talking to this AI system and interaction with it.

Thanks all!


Media for Poem/1

None. Let’s be hopeful. None yet!

This whimsical clock is the playful gadget AI needs right now
Fast Company (30 Jan 2024)

Great piece by long-time critical friend of the design and technology world Mark Wilson, a vital role, who has been watching the emerging AI hardware landscape closer than anyone else I follow. It covers the story and design decisions behind Poem/1.

The Poem/1 clock dreams up a new poem every minute to tell you the time. Do you need it? No. But you might want it.

013 Matt Webb - Poem/1
Journey With Purpose podcast (30 Jan 2024)

I had a TON of fun in this pretty irreverent conversation with Randy Plemel… which also gets into some serious points about design process.

I’m making this gag clock. Which talks in ridiculous poems that sounds like a tiny, tiny Sam Altman telling me to go for it. And I’m using planetary compute to do it. And I love the absurdity.

Rhyming AI-powered clock sometimes lies about the time, makes up words
Ars Technica (30 Jan 2024)

Zooms in on the charming (but risky) aspect of a clock that may hallucinate the time. (This is rare now as I answer in the Kickstarter campaign FAQ.)

Poem/1 Kickstarter seeks $103K for fun ChatGPT-fed clock that may hallucinate the time.

It’s Noon You Loon: AI-Powered Clock Tells Time With Poems Written By ChatGPT
Forbes (2 Feb 2024)

Pleasant, informative piece based on an interview so it has some extra detail.

“We have a machine-poet velocity of 0.5 million poems/year,” Webb joked over email. “There’s a new unit of measurement for you.”

Overpromising and Stumbling Bambis
Nick Foster (14 Feb 2024)

Foster is former Head of Design at Google X. He says that tech companies position their products not only as new ideas but as culturally important moments, ruptures in the status quo or accelerations of our species.

Instead Poem/1 is

a bit of new thinking escaping in the form of a product.

Some more:


I am so grateful for any coverage. Especially when the Kickstarter campaign launches next week, exact date TBA. It’ll be a marathon I’m sure. I am available for podcasts, opportunist soundbites, breakfast TV, internal talks and marriages and garden parties.

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If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it by email or on social media. Here’s the link. Thanks, —Matt.