The Future Will See You Now

Hide Your Kegs: Supercomputer Watson Headed to College

Oh, dear.
And God only knows what else. (Photo:

And God only knows what else. (Photo:

Did IBM learn nothing from the Urban Dictionary fiasco? The AP reports that the company is now sending Watson to college–specifically, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where the supercomputer will be studying up on both English and mathematics.

God knows what kinds of terrible habits and filthy language he’ll pick up there!

RPI gets to run Watson’s software for three years at its own supercomputing facilities. Researchers’ goals include finding ways to “improve Watson’s mathematical ability and help it quickly figure out the meaning of new or made-up words.” A university sounds like a good place for that, all right.

“We consider it absolutely strategic technology for IBM in the future. And we want to evolve it, of course, thoughtfully, but also in collaboration with the best and brightest in academia,” Michael Henesey, IBM’s vice president of business development, told the AP.

That’s what parents always say, until the first Christmas break when it’s all, “actually my professor says” this and “but Marxist historians would argue” that.

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