Elementary, My Dear Watson…Computer Defeats Humans

IBM’s “Watson” has defeated its human competition in a three-day competition between the machine and two of Jeopardy’s all-time greatest champions: Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter.

I love that Jennings showed his humor during Final Jeopardy with his line “I for one welcome our new computer overlords.” This, you may remember, is a line taken from The Simpsons.

From the Associated Press:

Watson’s winning score was $41,413 for the day ($77,147 for both games), while Jennings notched $19,200 ($24,000 overall) and Rutter reached $11,200 ($21,600 overall).

For crushing his rivals, Watson gets a total prize of $1 million, which IBM has said will go to the charities World Vision and World Community Grid.

The vanquished Jennings and Rutter get $300,000 and $200,000, respectively, half of which each said they would be donating to charities.

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8 Comments on “Elementary, My Dear Watson…Computer Defeats Humans”

  1. Honeydog Says:

    Call me Cynical, but I’ve read too many Books and seen too many Documentaries on the Trustworthiness and Efficiency of the use of “Machines” which operate Game-Show Playing Equipment, and
    “Computerized Players”. Indeed, “Watson” and the like make for unique, more-intense, extra-challenging, and greater entertainment for Players and Viewers, but nothing can match the undisputed Honesty, Dependability, Certainty, Safety and Security of Humans against Humans. I don’t Trust it, I don’t see how another Human Being could be absolutely-positively-beyond-a-shadow-of-a-doubt Trusting, and I think it’s a bit sad that I can visualize this type of Game-Show Competitiveness being the wave of the future.


  2. I’m very impressed by the ability of Watson

  3. One Op Says:

    I don’t like Watson one little bit. What incentive do humans have to learn anything is their brain is to be defeated by a machine. I don’t trust that “Watson” could not have been preprogramed with questions and the answers. What a tin foil world we are coming to. We have computerized actors. So what is all this leading to the extinction of human beings. I’m not ready yet to be extincted! Got it!?

  4. zelda Says:

    Let’s ask Watson about human the possibility of human extinction either by our own hand or by being outmoded by thinking machines like himself.
    Let’s ask him if he was and can be tampered with.
    Let’s ask him how to stop child abuse and murder.
    Let’s ask him for cures of diseases that the big drug companies don’t want us to have.
    Let’s ask him how to recognize potential serial killers etc. etc.
    Let’s ask him how to feed a starving world.

    If the “fail safe” answers we can get from him or the like work then I say hurrah.
    After all we aren’t doing so well on our own…….

  5. zelda Says:

    See……..if i had asked Watson to type my above comment there would not be any typos!

  6. One Op Says:

    Zelda, how did you think of all those things to ask, are you sure you are not another Watson? LOL

  7. zelda Says:

    I call myself Zelda by day and Watson by night…..hahahahahahahahah he he heh


  8. Watson does buzz in before the answer is formulated which is similar to how humans respond, but is also unfair in this type of competition as this is a game of mental prowess and not reflex speed. So Watson should not be able to buzz until after it formulates the response to be more fair. Mean it would still win, but perhaps not by as much.


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