researchers in italy have created a system which can automatically classify texts by their style, with hopes of clearing up debates over attribution for old texts (e.g. francis bacon as william shakespeare).
it’s also a pretty daunting proposition for people in the plagiarism business, such as stephen ambrose. his fans recently rallied around him, blurting support along the line of “so what if he plagiarized? everyone plagiarizes to some extent!” my gut instinct says that some people plagiarize more than others, and with any luck we’ll be able to prove this statement in the near future.