Watson is the computer that famously won the US game show Jeopardy last year, part of a traditional of IBM ‘grand challenges’ that includes the computer Deep Blue which in 1997 won a chess match against world champion Garry Kasparov. At the time it was reported that IBM intended Watson to be applicable in business cases where large quantities of data need sorting, for example in healthcare.
Now, in an article titled “IBM’s Watson is changing careers”, Fortune reports Watson “will soon be available as a commercialized analytics tool for data-heavy industries like healthcare, telecom and financial services”, with insurance company WellPoint acting as a pilot tester. With Watson as a cloud service, the article suggests some example applications:
A financial services firm could use it to sift through news reports and market research to find likely acquisition targets. Or a healthcare company could utilize Watson to process medical articles, prior cases and even a patient’s own medical history and identify the most likely diagnosis and best course of treatment.
Fortune acknowledges that data analytics is nothing new, but describes Watson as like “Siri… on intergalactic steroids”.
IBM has further plans for making Watson available on smartphones and tablets, and for translation to other languages “including Japanese and French”. The article also mentions competitors to IBM such as Oracle and SAP are also investing in analytics.
Source: IBM’s Watson is changing careers.