“Watson! Come here!” These immortalized words were spoken into the telegraph by Alexander Graham Bell on March 10, 1876 and heard on the second telegraph by his assistant, Thomas A. Watson, who was in the next room. It was the first successful experiment with the telephone. Since then, the world has never been the same. Fast forward 140 years where another Watson is making history.
Say Hello to IBM Watson, the first cognitive computer
Since its triumph on the television quiz show Jeopardy! three years ago, IBM has advanced Watson from a game playing innovation into a commercial technology. Today, Watson has shrunk from the size of a master bedroom to three stacked pizza boxes. It’s also 24 times faster and has improved its performance by 2,400 percent, and is 90 percent smaller
How TryTracker game prediction abilities transformed into IBM Watson Analytics
Originally used to predict the outcome of rugby games, IBM TryTracker technology is now showing businesses how to gain a tactical advantage over competitors. "A lot of decisions are made largely based on gut instinct rather than evidence based on insight from analyzing data," says Chris Nott, IBM Big Data and Analytics Chief Technical Officer.
Today, TryTracker is being implemented by businesses as IBM Watson Analytics to help them better understand their customers. "Those that are more effective at adopting analytics in their organizations actually change the way they make their decisions, and that's a significant cultural change," added Nott.
However, according to the latest IBM Institute of Business Value annual analytics survey, finding individuals who can create insight from the combination of business intelligence and analytics remains a major challenge for organizations.
IBM Watson available via the cloud
As of May 2013, Watson Analytics became accessible via the cloud with the launch of the Watson Engagement Advisor. Already, hundreds of clients and partners across six continents, 25 countries, and 12 industries are applying Watson’s big analytics to their organizations through this application. The Watson Developer Cloud, a cloud-hosted marketplace, allows application providers to tap into resources to build a new generation of apps infused with cognitive computing intelligence.
The applications created from Watson are only limited by the imagination. From revolutionizing the way medicine is taught, researched, and practiced, to online retailers gaining insight into customers’ browsing activity to heavy manufacturing predicting when a certain component might fail—anything’s possible.