Are you competing with a machine?
Yes and no.
Matt Waite, writing at Poynter, goes on for a bit about the humanity of journalism and the humanity-sapping nature of some of the boring stories we write from time to time. He also says “use your humanity to find a better story to write.”
A bot can free you from having to write that awful “Crime is up!” or “Crime is down!” story six months after anyone cares because that’s when the FBI releases the data.
Given structured data and some time, a programmer can write a bot that can write stories. You can write a bot that can write stories with first-week-of-class programming skills. I can teach you how to write a bot that writes a lead of a story in a single blog post.
And then he teaches you how to do that very thing. You can file this under working smart, not working hard.
You want a feather in your cap when it comes time to get that internship or nail that job interview? Show off some coding and programming skills. Waite is teaching you something important here.