IBM Supercomputer Crushes Human Competition

Over the past three days on Jeopardy, past champions Ken “It’s Obvious that Alex is Tired of Your Face” Jennings and Brad “Nobody Remembers Who I Am” Rutter faced off against an IBM Supercomputer by the name of Watson.

To say that it was a shellacking would be almost too kind.

After three days of competition, the Watson was the clear winner, more than doubling both Jennings and Rutter combined. The tallies?

  • Watson: $77,147
  • Jennings: $24,000
  • Rutter: $21,600

You have to give infinite credit to Ken Jennings, who conceded defeat to the computer through a clever Simpsons reference: “I, for one, welcome our new insect computer overlords.”

I, however, do not. As someone who watched The Terminator one-too-many times as a child, I know how this story is going to end… and I don’t like it. Nope. Not one bit. If you want to keep building smarter and faster computers, be my guest — but remember: no matter how smart you make it or how logical, it will never have the most important thing of all!

A human heart.

Watson’s $1 million grand prize will be donated to World Vision, a charitable organization that tries to help children around the world.

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One comment

  1. Yes, Watson did give its human opponents a shellacking. Given that trivia recall is exactly the sort of thing a computer is good at the impressive part is the NLP work, hats off to IBM on that front.

    However, Watson did not *more than double* the scores of both contestants, combined.

    77,147 / 2 = 38,573.5
    24,000 + 21,600 = 45,600

    Maybe being smarter than a human isn’t such a big deal, after all.

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