IBM Machine Beats Humans in Jeopardy

200px-JeopardyAn IBM machine has beaten two champions in a practice round of popular game Jeopardy.

The machine, named Watson, defeated champions Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter in a practice round of the game. This is in preparation for the upcoming first-ever man vs. machine Jeopardy competition airing February 14, 15 and 16.

Jennings is the record holder for longest winning streak in Jeopardy at 74 games while Rutter is the biggest all-time money winner. Watson finished the game with winnings of 4400 USD and Jennings came in at second with 3400 USD.

The four-year-old project Watson was named after IBM founder Thomas J. Watson. The company says that Watson’s feature to understand language makes it more technologically advanced than Deep Blue, the company’s supercomputer that defeated world chess champion Gary Kasparov in 1997.

The machine has an internal database for a wide scope of topics and does not need an Internet. It does have problems with distinguishing between literal and metaphorical expressions and comprehending puns and slang.

Watson was not only built to compete in games but can be used in various fields like health care and customer service.