Monday, October 24, 2016

How is the five year old?

IBM and Google are investing billions into their five year old child.  It is their robot that is learning fast. As it is given data and given outcomes, it learns and as it interacts with humans, it gets even smarter and most of all it never forgets. It already has all the elements that humans have some of but wish we had more even at our peaks in life. We are all already sharing in the capabilities because elements of the genius are already in your cell phone and car and helping patients and doctors in ways at top speed that was never even imagined before. The field is called AI Artificial Intelligence.  We are definitely on the path of creating the monster. Robots that are smarter than humans and that are immortal.
What was once only found in the world of science fiction has become now day to day reality. It is no longer just a large computer able to store lots of information. Now it can take the information and make judgement calls as to what to do with the information. Yes it can think like a human. Sometimes thinking creatively with better judgement that the best intentioned human. The technology is so promising that IBM is betting it all on their 5 year old child Watson. Remember the computer that played with the smart guys on Jeopardy? Watson lives and has gotten better. Watson now has the capability to read a million books per second. It is a child with little intelligence but as it is given data, it learns. That makes it dramatically different from any other computer in business. As Watson interacts with humans, It  gets smarter and never forgets.
In 2011 Watson was featured in a game on Jeopardy called the IBM Challenge where humans went to task against the machine with facts. It took 5 years for Watson to learn English and facts from all sources to prepare for the challenge. Watson  won a clear victory and won 1 million dollars. The other 2 contestants won 2 and 3 hundred thousand dollars. A big difference. It was just the beginning of Watson’s expectations.  Fast forward to 2016 and now Watson is deep in Cancer research and data. 20 medical institutions are injecting Watson with dilemma’s and research. Watson’s job after going through medical school is to go through patient’s records and to come up with another solution for a patient that has already gone through the standard treatments and have failed. Yes, Watson is another doctor’s suggestion for treatment.
To keep track of all the trials for Cancer treatment being conducted all over the world is a daunting task. 8,000 new research papers are being published every day in the quest for the cure for Cancer. Now Watson recommendations are being taken very seriously in the medical world. However, in 99% of the cases, Watson agreed with the doctors and the treatments given. It gives us confidence in our human doctors but we still need that magical cure all.

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