Robert Hampton

Another visitor! Stay a while… stay forever!

17th February 2011

Watson, come here, I need you

If they ever do a new version of Catchphrase, Mr Chips could actually be a contestant:-

IBM’s supercomputer Watson has trounced its two competitors in a televised show pitting human brains against computer bytes.

After a three night marathon on the quiz show Jeopardy, Watson emerged victorious to win a $1million (£622,000) prize.

The really worrying thing here is that Jeopardy usually uses a “returning champion” format where the winner comes back the next day to play again. That computer could conceivably play indefinitely, winning thousands of dollars every day. After a few years, it would own most of the world’s wealth. And then you have all sorts of problems – can a computer open a bank account, for example?

I, for one welcome this development, and plan to enjoy the few years I have left before the inevitable day when robots overthrow human civilisation.

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