Universities enroll to develop IBM's Watson

Summary:IBM and eight universities from around the world will collaborate on developing Big Blue's Watson supercomputer and the question answering (QA) technology behind it.

IBM and eight universities from around the world will collaborate on developing Big Blue's Watson supercomputer and the question answering (QA) technology behind it.

Watson on Monday will appear on Jeopardy to compete against humans.

The universities signed up to advance Watson's QA technology include:

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and its Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab;
  • University of Texas, which will collaborate on automated reasoning and common sense;
  • University of Southern California, which will focus on information extraction and parsing;
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), which will work on visualization tools;
  • University at Albany, which has developed QA capability for longer investigations;
  • University of Trento, which will focus on machine learning and conversational agents;
  • University of Massachusetts, which will work on information retrieval;
  • Carnegie Mellon, which already contributed algorithms to Watson.

The plan is to develop an open architecture---including open source software---so researchers can collaborate on Watson's QA technology and apply those enhancements in the field.

Topics: CXO, Enterprise Software, IBM

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Larry Dignan is Editor in Chief of ZDNet and SmartPlanet as well as Editorial Director of ZDNet's sister site TechRepublic. He was most recently Executive Editor of News and Blogs at ZDNet. Prior to that he was executive news editor at eWeek and news editor at Baseline. He also served as the East Coast news editor and finance editor at CN... Full Bio

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