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Jeopardy Contestant A Robot?

Have you heard of the computer that was designed to be a contestant on Jeopardy? No Ken Jennings was not a robot! It is a new device created by IBM named Watson. Is it fair to compete against a computer that has virtually unlimited amount of memory? And what else could this computer be used for?

While right now it’s just a trivia spewing monster, experts predict this technology could work as a legal or medical adviser. Very interesting indeed.

Dan Vergano – USA TODAY

Watson, the IBM computer created to be a champ-challenging contestant on Jeopardy!, chewed up and spat out humanity’s finest knights of trivia Wednesday night in a $77,147 drubbing of past record winners Ken Jennings ($24,000 total) and Brad Rutter ($21,600).

“I sort of felt like I wanted to win here as badly as I ever have before. This is like the dignity of the species,” Jennings told CBS Evening News after the first night’s show.

So has the fatal day of reckoning arrived, foretold by Frankenstein, 2001: A Space Odyssey and, of course, The Terminator series of man-vs.-machine movies? Even trivia, one of humanity’s favorite pursuits, has yielded to the mighty computer.

What is “not so much”?, Alex.

“It is clear (Watson) was designed to play Jeopardy! very well,” says computer intelligence expert John Laird of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, both in its vast erudition — answering Saturday Night Live‘s “Church Lady” in one question — and its “impressive” accuracy. But, he adds, “I think IBM could have a challenge to move this to other fields.”

Full story at usatoday.com

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