Watson Apps Due Next Year

December 22, 2013

To what pressing issue is IBM now applying Watson’s superior (artificial) intellect? Why, to shopping, of course. Business Insider reports, “IBM’s Jeopardy-Winning Supercomputer Will Power a ‘Cognitive, Expert Personal Shopper’ App Next Year.” Writer Dylan Love was especially taken by one app on the horizon from a firm called Fluid Retail.

He quotes IBM Watson Solutions VP Stephen Gold:

“Fluid, which builds online shopping experiences for retail businesses to drive customer engagement and conversion, is developing the Fluid Expert Personal Shopper powered by IBM Watson. The app calls upon Watson’s ability to understand the nuances of human language and uncover answers from Big Data. Consumers who use Fluid’s app will interact with rich media and dialogue with Watson, as their newfound cognitive, expert personal shopper. The Fluid app incorporates the information users share and questions they ask to help them make smart, satisfying purchases by putting a knowledgeable sales associate in the hands of consumers, on demand.”

What happened to game shows, fighting cancer, and plain old search? Watson‘s game-show career may be over, and we would certainly like to see more of the tech applied to search. However, IBM is still running with the medical-field advances. One Watson-powered app due out next year, called Hippocrates (PDF), will streamline the process of researching medical device purchases for healthcare facilities. Another, CaféWell Concierge, is being developed by health-management company Welltok. The app will create personalized health itineraries for Welltok users.

So, I guess shopping is not the most pressing area on which Watson is working, just the one able to grab headlines. Isn’t that a relief?

Cynthia Murrell, December 22, 2013

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, developer of Augmentext


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