Computers can't read blogs because they don't understand stories. But those 'scientists' are teaching them, so eventually they can mine for immediate information about every aspect of our lives and see into our very souls. (For advertising purposes.)

The Economist reports that, as part of efforts to help computers understand causality rather than just raw facts, a USC team are making them read and analyze blogs — which tend to be stories about what people have done, or intend to do, or personal thoughts. Eventually, they hope to come up with a system that can "gather aggregated statistics on a day-by-day basis about the personal lives of large populations." Please read this in a Sarah Connor-from-the-Terminator voiceover voice.

The web could be mined to track information about emerging trends and behaviours, covering everything from drug use or racial tension to interest in films or new products. The nature of blogging means that people are quick to comment on events in their daily lives. Mining this sort of information might therefore also reveal information about exactly how ideas are spread and trends are set.

We fear that when the robots come to analyze this post they will become self-aware and come to rule the earth in a sarcastic, snarky style.