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Old November 18 2013, 05:24 PM   #9
DarthTom
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Re: Is Watson the most advanced super computer in existence?

Robert Maxwell wrote: View Post
Flying spaceships is actually pretty easy for computers, because it involves fairly straightforward physics calculations and a limited number of decisions to make (e.g. which engines to fire at which time to reach point B.) A spacecraft autopilot is quite a bit less complicated than a system like Watson, so it's a bad example.

1. Expert systems can learn more information based on the rules and associations they already have. Depending on how fuzzy its logic is, it could have relations like the following:

* All mammals have hair.
* All mammals are animals.
* All dogs are mammals.
* Yorkshire terrier is a breed of dog.
* A breed is a subcategory/type.

Conclusions:

* All Yorkshire terriers are dogs, mammals, animals, and have hair.

That's a very simple example, but it's relations like these that make up the knowledge of a system like Watson.

2. That's a poor question because computers interact with humans in all kinds of ways. If you mean carrying on a conversation with humans, well, programs like ELIZA remain perennially popular despite not being all that advanced. They are just human enough to fake it. Alice is a more recent example that's good at conversing with humans, albeit in text form. Speech recognition is pretty good these days, so it wouldn't be hard to make a talkie version.

Computational speed is less relevant than memory access strategies. Watson's uniqueness is in the vast amount of information it can sort through quickly, not how fast its CPU is. It is far more data-bound. So, that means very fast (and ample) memory, with fast CPUs being of secondary importance for its purposes.
Thanks Robert Maxwell for the information. In the docu-fiction Alien Planet the probes investigating the planet are claimed to have the 'intelligence,' of a 4 year old. Does Watson and systems like it possess that level of intelligence?

BTW, I'm sure you've read about it. Japan's talking space robot that recently joined the ISS, Kirobo, is another interesting entry in additon to Watson into human - computer interaction.

And could a system like Watson - or even Watson itself - with enough programming successfully investigate a planet with little or no human intervention?

In otherwords - do we possess the technology today to send a probe to an alien planet that would run mostly autonomous of human intervention?
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