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IBM enlists universities for cognitive computing effort

Posted: 08 Oct 2013 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IBM? cognitive systems? super computer? communications technology?

The RPI team, led by Selmer Bringsjord, will explore artificial intelligence techniques that take advantage of recent IBM advances in processing power, data availability, and "smart" algorithms including "semantic" data tools.

The CMU team, led by Eric Nyberg, will concentrate on the rapid construction, optimisation, and real-time adaptation of large collections of analytic components, such as personalized information agents that directly interact with users.

The NYU team, led by Paul Horn, senior vice provost for research at New York University, will develop automated pattern recognition algorithms that reflect how deep learning using neural networks can impact science.

"Our view is that these new cognitive systems will accelerate progress immensely. Up until now we have been using cognitive shovels, but these new tools will be like cognitive bulldozers, enabling us to do a lot more in terms of decision support systems that augment human performance. And from the global university perspective they will also have profound implications regarding the ways we teach. Just as the calculator changed how students did math problems, cognitive computers will transform higher education," said Spohrer.

Figure 1: IBM's Watson cluster supercomputer beat the human champions on the television quiz show Jeopardy.

In addition to expanding the capabilities of IBM's Watson, several other cognitive computing initiatives also fall under the umbrella of the Cognitive Systems Institute, including IBM's attempts to build computer chips modelled on the human brainthe Systems of Neuromorphic Adaptive Plastic Scalable Electronics (SyNAPSE) project sponsored by the Defence Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA).

- R. Colin Johnson
??EE Times

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