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back to article IBM pits Watson super against humanity

"This downtown boy met and married an uptown girl." On the popular Jeopardy game show, such a statement functions like a question in terms of being a piece of input data that expects one and only one bit of output data, in this case an actual question: "Who is Billy Joel?" While playing the Jeopardy game is not all that …

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Unhappy

Hard problem

I have a feeling this is a thankless job for IBM. It's a very, very hard problem, and the majority of the population probably doesn't understand just how hard a problem this is for a computer to solve. When the computer does respectably, but doesn't totally dominate the game, most people will probably laugh at the computer.

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Silver badge

Man against Machine ...... always a Rigged Game in which Virtual AIMachinery Always Win Wins.

"We'll see," says Ferrucci with a laugh. "We certainly wouldn't be in the game if we didn't think we had a good chance."

Don't play against a poker player is real sound advice, in order to have a fair chance.

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Thumb Down

Nope

Clever computer answers Jeopardy questions? I think not - shouldn't take a great deal of processing to map the lexical items and grammatical structures from the given info in order to arrive at a possible answer or at least a range of good guesses.

No, what I would like to see is a computer that can solve a cryptic crossword like The Times, for instance. In fact, if a computer could do that without just using pattern matching, then I reckon it'd be a good candidate for beating the Turing test.

Then again, I don't believe the American press carry cryptic crosswords (in the UK sense), so maybe the IBM boffins just aren't aware of how challenging they can be.

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*NOT* Eliza redux

@Paul Slater:

"shouldn't take a great deal of processing to map the lexical items and grammatical structures from the given info in order to arrive at a possible answer or at least a range of good guesses."

This is exactly the type of comment Adam Azarchs above was predicting.

Yes, yes, lexical items and grammatical structures are all well and good when dealing with lab-controlled sentences. Try dealing with the sort of ill-formed linguistic mess us humans produce everyday...

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Happy

Meh...

...When they build one that can work out what amanfrommars is saying, I'll be impressed :)

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Happy

IBM Announcement

We received an email about this yesterday - the part I loved was "this challenge is even more daunting than chess due to its broad range of subject matter, the speed at which accurate answers must be provided and the need to analyze clues containing irony, riddles and other subtleties of human thought and expression"

Irony ? Won't be developed in the US then

And my suggestion trick question : "what colour top is the person to your left wearing?"

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Silver badge
Alien

Re: Meh...

My theory is that amanfrommars is the prototype for this...

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