Thursday, January 13, 2011

Watson travels the states without a floppy disk

- Tomorrow (January 14th) a computer built by IBM will match wits against Jeopardy's two greatest champions.  The contest will be shown on television in February.  Deep Blue beat Kasparov in chess over 12 years ago, so you might be thinking to yourself, "why is this a big deal?  The computer will crush them."  The computer may very well win, but programming a computer to handle voice input and natural language processing in such a fashion that it can play an effective game of Jeopardy really is a big deal!  More about the match:

- When you type the name of a state into a Google search, what is the first thing you see at the top of the search results?

- Hunter S. Thompson's description of derby week at the Kentucky Derby.  I may have provided a link to this article years ago.  It's worth another read:

- Top fifty programming quotes of all-time:

- Twenty things I learned about browsers and the web:

- Why is the hard-drive of a personal computer designated with the letter C:?  Why not A or B?  To people of a certain age, this is a silly question.  Similar to asking who is Johnny Carson, or asking someone if they have ever seen a phonebook.  To young people however, this is a legitimate question:


Randal said...

It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. It always phrases its responses in the form of a question. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.

Actually, they fed the computer the question, so voice recognition wasn't a factor. What was impressive is being able to parse the sometimes punny and roundabout questions of the format.

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