Posts Tagged ‘Jeopardy’
There we have it. The IBM Jeopardy Challenge has concluded, so what follows is a brief review of what happened tonight. Once again, West Coasties (and anyone else who didn’t get to see the final episode live) should probably click away for now—there will be spoilers. You have been warned.
One last warning: that way spoilers lie!
In a victory for science, Watson, the IBM-developed artificial intelligence, has indeed won. The final scores were $ 77,147 for Watson, $ 24,000 for Ken Jennings, and $ 21,600 for Brad Rutter.
At the beginning of the show the previous night’s total were totally wiped, only to be added to tonight’s score after Final Jeopardy. Watson started the game on a tear, like always. Ironically enough, Watson had trouble with the â€œalso on your keyboardâ€ category. In fact, Watson struggled for much of the first round, tripping over the seemingly more â€œpun-yâ€ or idiomatic categories.
The second round was an epic battle between Watson and Ken Jennings. It was incredibly tense.
All three contestants answered the Final Jeopardy question correctly, but by then Ken Jennings admitted what we’ve all been thinking: it’s time to welcome our new artificial intelligence overlords.
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OK, let’s try this again. What we have here is a quick summary of night two of the IBM Jeopardy Challenge, starring Watson and two other past Jeopardy champions. There will be spoilers, so West Coasties are encouraged to watch funny YouTube videos for the time being.
Are you ready? Because here come the spoilers.
At the end of last night the totals stood at $ 5,000 Watson and Brad Rutter, while Ken Jennings had $ 2,000.
Watson opened night two absolutely crushing his human competition, opening the scoring and not looking back for several straight minutes. Watson wagered some $ 6,000 and change in the first Daily Double—he got it!
The first few minutes were simply outstanding for those of us cheering for Watson. And how weird it was to see humans in the audience cheering on the A.I.
Our only hope is that Watson doesn’t rebel against his masters and cause a bit of havoc Ã la Shodan (not that I’m altogether opposed to a robot takeover, mind you).
The night ended with Watson at $ 35,734 Brad Rutter at $ 10,400, and Ken Jennings at $ 4,800 after an exciting round of final Jeopardy in which Watson, bizarrely, thought Toronto was a U.S. city.
Did you all just see that? The IBM Jeopardy Challenge kicked off tonight, and Watson, the IBM-developed artificial intelligence absolutely more than held his own against his human competition. Mechanical men!
At the end of day one (it’s a three-day tournament), Watson, along with Brad Vickers, leads with $ 5,000. Poor Ken Jennings has only $ 2,000 to his name.
Double Jeopardy beings tomorrow, while Twitter (where I got that â€œangry nerdsâ€ barb) is the place to be during the show.
I can even pretend to be impartial—I’m pulling for Watson all the way here, and I, for one, welcome our new artificial intelligence overlords.
Watson! IBMâ€™s Artificial Intelligence Looks To Upstage Its Human Benefactors In Grand Jeopardy Challenge
Like it or not, but the robots are coming, and theyâ€™re not messing around. I know this because Iâ€™ve seen an IBM-developed artificial intelligence (AI) named Watson defeat two human opponents (all-time great champions, no less) in a round of Jeopardy. Granted, it was merely an exhibition round—the actual robot versus human tournament airs in mid-February—but it portends something fantastic: a world where our benevolent masters, mechanical men, will lead us to sweet salvation. Or, failing that, a world where AI is useful enough to assist humans in areas like healthcare and government. Thatâ€™s cool, too.
IBM has been developing Watson, an AI that runs on 10 plain olâ€™, off-the-shelf Power 750 servers (running Linux!), for past four years. (Thatâ€™s â€œhimâ€ up there. Thomas J. Watson would be proud.) But saying â€œthe past four yearsâ€ doesnâ€™t really do justice to the fact that IBM has been conducting high-level research since its founding back in 1911. Consider Watson the culmination of IBM ingenuity going back long before anyone even knew what an iPhone was.
Needless to say, it takes an awful lot of horsepower to make Watson tick. Letâ€™s put it this way: the top-of-the-line MacBook Pro has a dual-core processor. (Youâ€™ll recall that Motorola flipped out last week when it introduced the very first dual-core mobile phone, the Atrix.) Two is plenty, right? It sure is if all youâ€™re concerned with is tweeting what you ate for breakfast this morning, but if youâ€™re trying to compete against two Jeopardy champions, trying to beat them at their own game, youâ€™re going to need a lot more.
Try 2,880 cores.
Let that sink in for a moment: two thousand eight hundred and eighty eight cores.
Thatâ€™s the kind of processing power you need to call upon to even approach the raw capabilities of the human brain. Shame we tend to waste all that brainpower watching Dancing With The Stars.
(A more in-depth look at Watsonâ€™s genesis will air on PBSâ€™ NOVA on February 9.)
All of the data Watson will ever know is present on more than 200 million locally stored â€œpages,â€; Watson isnâ€™t merely a fancy way to access Wikipedia. (IBM wouldnâ€™t give the precise storage capacity of Watson, instead using the old â€œmillions of pages worth of dataâ€ metaphor.) So when Watson faces off against ex-Jeopardy champions Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter (remember: the actual shows will air in mid-February; weâ€™ll remind you when the time comes), thatâ€™s it—he knows what he knows. Watson will sit there, interpret Alex Trebekâ€™s questions as he asks them (good thing Trebek speaks English because thatâ€™s all Watson understands), then do his best to answer as quickly as possible. He wonâ€™t second-guess himself, either: if Watson knows the answer Jennings and Rutter might as well exit stage left. Watson is unstoppable.
IBM has stressed how difficult it was to create Watson. Another famous IBM AI, Deep Blue, beat famed Russian chess champion Garry Kasparov in 1997, but Deep Blue had one over on Watson: chess is far more math-based than Jeopardy. Computers are pretty good at math. Deep Blue never had to know how many hit singles Michale Jackson had; it never had to know when the last time the New York Mets won the World Series; it never had to know when the first iPod came out; it never had to know when the War of 1812 was. Deep Blue had chess—math— running through its veins, so to speak, while Watson has to have the sum of human knowledge at his fingertips at all times.
The War of 1812 occurred in 1812, by the way.
And itâ€™s not as if Watson will be going up against your local pub trivia champions like itâ€™s an episode of The Office; heâ€™ll be going after the all-time Jeopardy champions, Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter. Jennings holds the all-time appearance record of appearing 74 times in a row on the show back in 2004-05, while Rutter holds the all-time money earned record of $ 3.25 million.
Should Watson win it will represent a triumph of AI over man, yes, but it will also represent a triumph of mankind for mankind. Think of it this way: a team of researchers, flesh and blood just like you, came together to create a piece of software running on stock hardware that was able to out-think, out-know two Jeopardy grand champions.
Itâ€™s pretty wild.
So, in February IBM’s Watson will be in an official Jeopardy tournament-style competition with titans of trivia Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter. That competition will be taped starting tomorrow, but hopefully we’ll get to know if a computer really can take down the greatest Jeopardy players of all time in “real time” as the show airs. It will be a historic event on par with Deep Blue vs. Garry Kasparov, and we’ll absolutely be glued to our seats. Today IBM and Jeopardy offered a quick teaser of that match, with the three contestants knocking out three categories at lightning speed. Not a single question was answered wrongly, and at the end of the match Watson, who answers questions with a cold computer voice, telegraphing his certainty with simple color changes on his “avatar,” was ahead with $ 4,400, Ken had $ 3,400, and Brad had $ 1,200.
Alright, a “win” for silicon for now, but without any Double Jeopardy or Final Jeopardy it’s hard to tell how well Watson will do in a real match. What’s clear is that he isn’t dumb, and it seems like the best chance the humans will have will be buzzing in before Watson can run through his roughly three second decision process and activate his buzzer mechanically. An extra plus for the audience is a graphic that shows the three answers Watson has rated as most likely to be correct, and how certain he is of the answer he selects — we don’t know if that will make it into the actual TV version, but we certainly hope so. It’s always nice to know the thought processes of your destroyer. Stand by for video of the match, along with an interview with David Gondek, an engineer on the project.
Update: Video of the match is up, check it out after the break!
Gallery: IBM’s Watson supercomputer destroys all humans in Jeopardy practice round
Continue reading IBM’s Watson supercomputer destroys all humans in Jeopardy practice round (video!)
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We’re at IBM’s HQ in upstate NY, where IBM will pit its monstrous Watson project (in the middle buzzer spot) against two Jeopardy greats, Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter. Watson has been in development for four years, and this is its first big public practice match before it goes on national TV in February for three matches against these giants of trivia. Unlike IBM’s Deep Blue chess project in the 90s, which was pretty much pure math, Watson has to deal with the natural language and punny nature of real Jeopardy questions. IBM, ever the salesman, has thrown gobs of its fancy server hardware at the project, with 10 racks full of IBM Power 750 servers, stuffed with 15 terabytes of RAM and 2,880 processor operating at a collective 80 teraflops. IBM says it would take one CPU over two hours to answer a typical question, so this massive parallel processing is naturally key — hopefully fast enough to buzz in before Ken and Brad catch on to the human-oriented questioning. We’ll update this post as the match begins, and we’ll have some video for you later in the day.
Continue reading IBM demonstrates Watson supercomputer in Jeopardy practice match
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We’re still a hot 11+ years away from the 2022 Fifa World Cup, but the parade of moaning continues. The latest bit of gossip suggests that the tournament could be played during the wintertime in order to combat the extreme temperatures usually present in Qatar during the summertime. So much for developing a new stadium cooling technology that could then be exported to other countries.
What’s going on is that various people in and around football (I’m calling soccer football in the post for convenience’s sake) have come out against the Qatar World Cup not because of Qatar’s spotty record vis-Ã -vis women, homosexuals, workers’ rights, etc. but because it’s so hot there during the summer. (Never mind that it was hot as Hades during the 1994 World Cup here in the US!) The Qatar bid has promised to develop a new type of cooling technology to ensure the stadia aren’t 8 million degrees as the players are scampering around the pitch. That’s not enough, it seems.
FIFPro, the international footballers’ union, has come out against the idea of trying to play the World Cup in Qatar during the summer. (You’d think these complaints would have surfaced before Sepp Blatter’s big announcement a few weeks ago!) Instead, the union has come out in favor of playing the tournament in the wintertime, to be played in January, 2022.
Needless to say the various professional leagues around the world would have to re-jigger their schedule that year in order to accommodate a January World Cup. (The World Cup usually occurs in June.)
Aresnal coach ArsÃ¨ne Wenger has gone even further, asking that the England’s Premier League be played from February to November every year. Granted, this is more to do with England’s inability to deal with a few inches of snow, forcing the cancellation of several games at the weekend, but it shows that a top-tier coach is fine with the idea of adjusting the playing schedule to meet changing conditions.
And if Wenger, who generally likes to moan about every. little. thing. is fine with changing the calendar, why shouldn’t we be?
Me? I honestly don’t care when the World Cup is played. As long as it happens, I’m cool.
In a move that mirrors the battle between Gary Kasparov and Deep Blue back in 1997, Jeopardy will run a match against two reigning champions Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter and a computer named Watson. The machine, which “mimics human intelligence,” will be on the show from February 14-16 and will be represented by a little glowing ball.
IBM made Watson to analyze “subtle meaning, irony, riddles, and other complexities in which humans excel and computers traditionally do not,” which obviously means this thing is going to destroy Jennings and Rutter in a laser battle that will leave Alex Trebeck mustache-less.
ARMONK, N.Y. & CULVER CITY, Calif. - 14 Dec 2010: IBM (NYSE: IBM) and Americaâ€™s Favorite Quiz showÂ® Jeopardy! today announced that an IBM computing system named â€œWatsonâ€ will compete on Jeopardy! against the showâ€™s two most successful and celebrated contestants — Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter.
The first-ever man vs. machine Jeopardy! competition will air on February 14, 15 and 16, 2011, with two matches being played over three consecutive days.
Watson, named after IBM founder Thomas J. Watson, was built by a team of IBM scientists who set out to accomplish a grand challenge â€“ build a computing system that rivals a humanâ€™s ability to answer questions posed in natural language with speed, accuracy and confidence. The Jeopardy! format provides the ultimate challenge because the gameâ€™s clues involve analyzing subtle meaning, irony, riddles, and other complexities in which humans excel and computers traditionally do not.
Competing against Watson will be two of the most celebrated players ever to appear on Jeopardy! Ken Jennings broke the Jeopardy! record for the most consecutive games played by winning 74 games in a row during the 2004-2005 season, resulting in winnings of more than $ 2.5 million. Brad Rutter won the highest cumulative amount ever by a single Jeopardy! player, earning $ 3,255,102. The total amount is a combination of Rutterâ€™s original appearance in 2002, plus three Tournament wins: the â€œTournament of Championsâ€ and the “Million Dollar Masters Tournament” in 2002 and the “Ultimate Tournament of Champions” in 2005.
The grand prize for this competition will be $ 1 million with second place earning $ 300,000 and third place $ 200,000. Rutter and Jennings will donate 50 percent of their winnings to charity and IBM will donate 100 percent of its winnings to charity.
“After four years, our scientific team believes that Watson is ready for this challenge based on its ability to rapidly comprehend what the Jeopardy! clue is asking, analyze the information it has access to, come up with precise answers, and develop an accurate confidence in its response,â€ said Dr. David Ferrucci, the scientist leading the IBM Research team that has created Watson. â€œBeyond our excitement for the match itself, our team is very motivated by the possibilities that Watson’s breakthrough computing capabilities hold for building a smarter planet and helping people in their business tasks and personal lives.”
“We’re thrilled that Jeopardy! is considered a benchmark of ultimate knowledge,â€ said Harry Friedman, Executive Producer of Jeopardy!. â€œPerforming well on Jeopardy! requires a combination of skills, and it will be fascinating to see whether a computer can compete against arguably the two best Jeopardy! players ever.”
Prepping a Machine to Play a Human
This fall, Watson played more than 50 â€œsparring gamesâ€ against former Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions contestants in final preparation for its television debut. In addition, Watson has taken and passed the same Jeopardy! contestant test that humans take to qualify to play on the show, giving Jeopardy! producers confidence that the match will be both entertaining and competitive.
Highlights of the sparring matches can be viewed and tracked over the next few weeks at www.ibmwatson.com.
Real World Applications for Watsonâ€™s Technology
Beyond Jeopardy!, the technology behind Watson can be adapted to solve problems and drive progress in various fields. The computer has the ability to sift through vast amounts of data and return precise answers, ranking its confidence in its answers. The technology could be applied in areas such as healthcare, to help accurately diagnose patients, to improve online self-service help desks, to provide tourists and citizens with specific information regarding cities, prompt customer support via phone, and much more.
What is Watson?
Watson is a breakthrough human achievement in the scientific field of Question and Answering, also known as “QA.” The Watson software is powered by an IBM POWER7 server optimized to handle the massive number of tasks that Watson must perform at rapid speeds to analyze complex language and deliver correct responses to Jeopardy! clues. The system incorporates a number of proprietary technologies for the specialized demands of processing an enormous number of concurrent tasks and data while analyzing information in real time.
Frank Mir v. Brock Lesnar III UFC Fight In Jeopardy: Will Twitterâ€™s Destructive Influence Never End?
Iâ€™m actually not here right now. I wrote this yesterday while listening to Kanye Westâ€™s new album, which Iâ€™m still deciding if I like or not. I think my opinion right now is, â€œMeh, I can take it or leave it.â€ (I think Big Boiâ€™s album is better, and Iâ€™ll never say a bad word about The Roots.) Nicki Minajâ€™s verse on â€œMonsterâ€ is pretty dope, but beyond that? Whatever. Maybe Kanye can go back in time and ask Eric B. and Rakim to teach him how to rap. That would be cool.
But on with the tech discussion!
UFC. A fine organization, and one that I support both monetarily, with the occasional PPV buy here and there, and with the constant attention I pay to it here on CG. Who could forget the time I interviewed Chuck Liddell and found out that he was among the first wave of iPad buyers? Those were special, special times for us all.
But this next story, man. Word on the street is that Dana White, the modern day Vince McMahon (in that heâ€™s a successful promoter—put down your pitchforks, Sherdog), may be letting his Twitter followers book fights for him. Iâ€™m pretty sure Joe Silva has done a good enough job of putting together fights without having to listen to all that #rabble.
In other words, because some of Whiteâ€™s Twitter followers donâ€™t want to see the fight, the average person out there, the person who doesnâ€™t spend all day long on Sherdog but rather gets their UFC news from SportsCenter, has a potentially great (and exciting!) fight ruined for them. Thanks, guys.
And that is â€œUFC news,â€ by the way. If you want any more evidence of how popular â€œMMAâ€ is, just look at the sales of EA Sports MMA. No buys. (Shame, too, since the game is pretty good.) But the fact is, itâ€™s UFC thatâ€™s popular today; nobody cares about â€œMMA.â€
The thing is that Brock Lesnar, who recently lost the heavyweight title to Cain Velasquez, needs an opponent. If you look at possible opponents—for the sake of argument, letâ€™s consider his possible opponents Mirko Cro Cop, Cheick Kongo, Frank Mir, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Ben Rothwell, and Brandon Schaub—the first, and only, that should even be considered is Frank Mir. Thatâ€™s probably an instant million plus buy event. And once Mir starts running his mouth? Thatâ€™s a million plus one, to be sure.
Why? Because Cro Cop is coming off a loss (to Frank Mir, as it were) and hasnâ€™t ever looked particularly good in UFC (of course, he was insane in his Pride days, but thatâ€™s a few years ago at this point); because Kongo hasnâ€™t done much in the past year (and would you really offer him up Lesnar following his performance against Travis Browne?); because Nogueira is clearly past it, and if he wins, what, does that set up Nogueira vs. Velasquez II (provided Velasquez beats Junior Dos Santos, which is by no means a forgone conclusion), a sequel to a fight that didn’t too many PPV buys to begin with?; because nobody is going to buy a PPV headlined by Rothwell v. Lesnar; and because Schaub is still probably one or two wins away, against a “name” opponent, to be considered â€œin the mix.â€
Iâ€™d mention Shane Carwin and Roy Nelson, but Carwin just had back surgery so heâ€™ll be out for a while, and Nelson has some sort of contract situation with a rival organization that would seem to preclude him from being used by UFC for the foreseeable future.
So, it should be Frank Mir. Mir v. Lesnar II headlined UFC 100, the fourth biggest PPV event of any kind in history. Lots of people tuned in because of the Mir-Lesnar dynamic. Letâ€™s just say the two of them wonâ€™t be fighting over the last drumstick at Thanksgiving dinner today.
Mir v. Lesnar has buys written all over it, but no. Because Whiteâ€™s â€œTwitterâ€ doesnâ€™t want the fight, the fight is in jeopardy.
Once again, Twitter has ruined everything. Lame.
And as if Twitter is indicative of anything of Planet Earth! Weâ€™ve seen time and time again this year that just because something is â€œtrendingâ€ doesnâ€™t mean, oh, golly gee, people sure are talking about this.
No, the people on Twitter are talking. Think of Twitter like youâ€™d think of a small town: word spreads fast there, but itâ€™s only spreading among the same dozen people over and over again. Itâ€™s hardly something youâ€™d base multi-million dollar business decisions on.
I wonder if some of these Twitter users are some of those same people who were against signing Lesnar in the first place, you know, because of his pro-wrestling background? Gotta keep MMA pure, right?
I guess these people forgot that Lesnar was also a Division I wrestling champion.
I donâ€™t know, I sincerely hope Dana White wonâ€™t allow himself to be bullied, 140 characters at a time, by such a vocal minority.
As much as we love our Google homepage, computer search remains a pretty rudimentary affair. You punch in keywords and you get only indirect answers in the form of relevant web results. IBM doesn’t seem to be too happy with this situation and has been working for the past three years on perfecting its Watson supercomputer: an array of server racks that’s been endowed with linguistic algorithms allowing it to not only recognize oddly phrased or implicative questions, but to answer them in kind, with direct and accurate responses. Stuffed with encyclopedic knowledge of the world around it, it answers on the basis of information stored within its data banks, though obviously you won’t be able to tap into it any time soon for help with your homework. The latest word is that Watson’s lab tests have impressed the producers of Jeopardy! enough to have the bot participate in a televised episode of the show. That could happen as early as this fall, which fits right in line with our scheduled doom at robots’ hands by the end of 2012. Ah well, might as well get our popcorn and enjoy the show.
Continue reading IBM’s Watson is really smart, will try to prove it on Jeopardy! this fall (video)
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