IBM Computer Trounces Humans in Jeopardy! Test Run

January 14, 2011 -

In a test run of a special battle between an IBM supercomputer named "Watson" and two of the best Jeopardy! players in the world, the computer dominates. The test of the computer is a preview of a televised battle to take place in January pitting two men against one machine. Score so far: Men 0, Computer 1.

IBM claims that Watson is a major advance in artificial intelligence, and if this test run is any indication, the company is speaking the gospel. Watson managed to beat former Jeopardy! champions Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter on Thursday in its first public test, a short practice round ahead of a million-dollar tournament that will be televised next month in a special series of shows.

Jennings is no lightweight: he won a record 74 consecutive "Jeopardy!" games in 2004 and 2005. Rutter won a record of nearly $3.3 million in prize money on the show.

According to IBM, Watson is powered by 10 racks of IBM servers running Linux. Watson is the result of four years worth of work by IBM researchers around the globe.

"Language is ambiguous; it's contextual; it's implicit," said IBM scientist David Ferrucci, a leader of the Watson team. Sorting out the context -- especially in a game show filled with hints and jokes -- is an enormous job for the computer, which also must analyze how certain it is of an answer and whether it should risk a guess, he said.

The practice round took place on a stage at the IBM research center in Yorktown Heights, 38 miles north of Manhattan. The real contest to be televised Feb. 14-16, will be played at IBM on Friday.

The winner of the match will be awarded $1 million. Second place gets $300,000, third place $200,000. IBM will donate any winnings Watson receives to charity. Jennings and Rutter will donate half of their winnings to charity because humans can actually use money.

During a press event after the test match, the former Jeopardy! champions joked about Watson:

"When Watson's progeny comes back to kill me from the future," Rutter said, "I have my escape route planned just in case."

"I had a friend tell me, 'Remember John Henry, the steel-drivin' man.' And I was like ... 'Remember John Connor!'" Jennings said. "We're gonna take this guy out!"

Source: Salon

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Re: IBM Computer Trounces Humans in Jeopardy! Test Run

 Quick someone find and protect John Connor.

Re: IBM Computer Trounces Humans in Jeopardy! Test Run

I don't know - a $1,000 lead at the end of the first segment, with three full categories and all of Double Jeopardy left to go, doesn't exactly say "trounce" to me. It's impressive, to be sure. But the headline here is a bit misleading.

Editor in Chief - Gamervision.com How Gamers See the World!

Re: IBM Computer Trounces Humans in Jeopardy! Test Run

That is pretty damn impressive actually.  The computer has to analyze the words of the answer, figure out contextually what is being asked, and then come up with the question response.  I'm assuming it also has to take the category into account as well, which adds another layer of complexity.  No doubt this AI is pretty damn sophisticated.

 
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Have you visited a video game arcade in the last year?:

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james_fudgeThere aren't many left in America08/21/2014 - 1:50am
MechaTama31I sure have. Dorky's barcade in Tacoma, WA.08/20/2014 - 5:56pm
Matthew WilsonI have not been to a arcade in years. I know arcades are still big in japan.08/20/2014 - 5:38pm
Sleaker@AE - Ah no it's called GroundKontrol - I was just referring to it as a Bar-Arcade.08/20/2014 - 4:39pm
Andrew EisenStill looking for confirmation that High Moon Studios (dev behind the PS3/360 versions) isn't working on it.08/20/2014 - 4:38pm
ZenGotcha.08/20/2014 - 4:37pm
Andrew EisenI already updated the story with it!08/20/2014 - 4:36pm
Zenhttp://www.gonintendo.com/s/235574-treyarch-isn-t-working-call-of-duty-advanced-warfare-for-wii-u-either08/20/2014 - 4:36pm
ZenLet me send the link for the Tweet as well...they state Treyarch is not working on it. Grabbing it now.08/20/2014 - 4:34pm
Andrew EisenWhere does it say that "NO dev is working on it"?08/20/2014 - 4:33pm
ZenHere's the link for my last comment: http://www.ign.com/articles/2014/08/20/call-of-duty-advanced-warfare-not-coming-to-wii-u08/20/2014 - 4:24pm
ZenWell, Call of Duty is skipping Wii U completely it seems...they updated that NO dev is working on it. Great way to just skip a market.08/20/2014 - 4:24pm
Andrew EisenYeah, Dave and Busters back in 2011 was the last time for me.08/20/2014 - 4:16pm
ZenWell, I tried lol. We just got a Dave and Busters on the beach but haven't been there yet...may go this weekend.08/20/2014 - 3:52pm
Andrew EisenIt's called The Bar-Arcade? Missed opportunity. I would have gone with Barcade.08/20/2014 - 3:25pm
SleakerThe Bar-Arcade however did have a lot of good pinball machines, they were however always taken as the place was packed..08/20/2014 - 1:17pm
Sleakerso I've been to an Arcade-Bar, not that great of a place has some okay machines, but generally over-packed. And then all the kid-friendly ones have is ticket-games nothing actually good unfortunately :(08/20/2014 - 1:14pm
Andrew EisenIf it has an area dedicated to arcade machines, I'd say it counts. Arcade machine in your house though, nope.08/20/2014 - 12:16pm
ZenDoes it count if you have actual arcade machines in your house?08/20/2014 - 12:01pm
E. Zachary KnightWith the current poll, I guess it all depends on how one defines "arcade". If Chuck E Cheese or similar multipurpose businesses count, then that is a yes for me.08/20/2014 - 11:59am
 

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