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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WonderkarpAs a life long X-Men fan, I cant tell you how much this annoys me http://www.ign.com/articles/2015/05/30/between-the-panels-marvels-merchandising-problem05/30/2015 - 10:23am
MechaCrashOh, no, I totally agree with you that Iron is being a jerk and needs to stop, but isn't the usual GG suggesstion for harassment "just ignore it, grow a thicker skin, don't report it"?05/30/2015 - 9:22am
Conster...and even the more stubborn and annoying ones are downright pleasant when compared to IronPatriot's behavior. His behavior is harassment regardless of whether it's aimed at pro-GG or anti-GG people, and it has to stop.05/30/2015 - 8:55am
ConsterMechaCrash: is this about Goth_Skunk's complaint against IronPatriot? Because while I'm anti-GG and strongly disagree with a lot of the stuff the pro-GG people on here say, most of them disapprove of harassment, even if it's 'in the name of GamerGate'...05/30/2015 - 8:55am
MechaCrashMan, some people are just...so immune to noticing irony, you know? The mind boggles.05/30/2015 - 8:35am
InfophileBut hey, I'm not a mod here. It's up to them05/30/2015 - 7:36am
InfophileThat's really not conducive to a good discussion. It just puts people on the defensive. So yeah, I really think IP should try to hold back on that. I'm not sure a ban is in order unless they show they can't or won't change, though05/30/2015 - 7:36am
InfophileLooking through IP's recent posts, there are some that do add to the discussion. There are also a handful which add nothing and are just jabs or point-scoring. It feels like IP is treating the comments more like a battleground than a discussion, honestly05/30/2015 - 7:34am
MattsworknameAhh, that explains why I wasn't aware. I don't follow, like ,nor care for soccer05/30/2015 - 6:50am
Goth_SkunkThe top dog at FIFA.05/30/2015 - 6:49am
MattsworknameWhose Blatter conster?05/30/2015 - 6:42am
ConsterSpeaking of non-video games for a second, I'm seriously disappointed in people for re-electing Blatter, and disgusted by his speech afterwards.05/30/2015 - 6:32am
ConsterHe's at least 5 times as bad as GS.05/30/2015 - 6:31am
Goth_SkunkEIC of Gameranx apologizes for his recent conduct: http://ow.ly/NDBxn Frankly, I'm surprised this wasn't posted sooner.05/30/2015 - 6:31am
ConsterGS does have a point: IP, on his own, causes at least as much harassment, insulting, and holier-than-thou'ness, as all the pro-GG people on this site combined.05/30/2015 - 6:30am
WonderkarpI am not sure I agree that its Harassment, But I do agree that he doesnt bring anything to the conversation. Its too the point where whenever I see his name, I just Thumbs down and move on. Its all buzz words and accusations and rarely civil05/30/2015 - 6:22am
MattsworknameWell, best of luck on that, but im not holding my breath.05/30/2015 - 5:04am
Goth_SkunkI believe the time to pull the plug was long ago, but kept quiet knowing full well Iron Patriot cannot help themself. There is a mountain of evidence to support my claim. In my opinion, it is harassment, and it needs to stop.05/30/2015 - 4:35am
Goth_SkunkIt's not getting me down. Far from it. Nevertheless, the conduct is unacceptable and has gone far beyond what any patient human being ought to be expected to tolerate.05/30/2015 - 4:34am
MattsworknameDont let him get you down Goth, I just go look at kitten videos for a bit to get my posistive mood back05/30/2015 - 4:27am
 

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