IBM supercomputer to take on game show Jeopardy!

For nearly two years, IBM scientists have been working on a highly advanced Question Answering (QA) system, codenamed Watson.

They believe that the computing system will be able to understand complex questions and answer with enough precision and speed to compete on Jeopardy!, and is preparing the machine to compete against human contestants on the game show.

“The essence of making decisions is recognising patterns in vast amounts of data, sorting through choices and options, and responding quickly and accurately,” says Samuel J. Palmisano, IBM chairman, president and CEO. “Watson is a compelling example of how the planet – companies, industries, cities – is becoming smarter. With advanced computing power and deep analytics, we can infuse business and societal systems with intelligence.”

The supercomputer challenge could have important implications for practical artificial intelligence programming. The research underlying Watson is expected to elevate computer intelligence and human-to-computer communication, with IBM intending to apply Watson’s technical capabilities to help clients across a wide variety of industries answer business questions quickly and accurately.

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