IBM has announced plans to establish the Watson Group and is willing to pony up $1 Billion dollars to house their Watson Supercomputer along with 2,000 employees in its own building in New York’s East Village. IBM says it will make available up to $100 Million dollars of that money to developers who can come up with new and creative uses for the artificial intelligence technology.

Watson became famous for beating a number of human Jeopardy champions in a well publicized contest in early 2011. Tech Explosion covered the story at the time and we speculated on how this is leading us to “The Singularity”.

Have a look at our early take on Watson vrs. Human on Jeopardy:

This event was one of the driving forces that inspired us to create TechExplosion.com. We definitely saw this as a turning point in the advancement of technology. Let’s say, we saw the “handwriting on the wall”.

Watson and its learning, artificial intelligence technology are already teaming up to work in the healthcare and financial services fields. One of Asia’s largest banks, DBS, is using Watson to analyze financial data. In healthcare, two hospitals are already working on using the Watson technology to help diagnose cancer patients. Memorial Sloan-Kettering and the Cleveland Clinic have had their doctors teach Watson how to recognize and suggest treatments for different types of cancer.

Watson’s technology allows it to learn subjects, perform human-like reasoning, and can even sort through contradictory information and essentially make decisions and come up with opinions, just like humans. It’s a bit scary, but the positive potential of this technology is endless. I’m sure that with the rapid advance of technology, this type of computer will become smaller and less expensive each year. One day soon, everyone will have this technology at their fingertips, just as we now have the internet. Then we can pretty much stop using our brains altogether!

Seriously, though, if you put together the pieces of the puzzle of what is happening right now…We are all headed to a cyborg future. We will all have the ability to readily find any information, wirelessly, and we will likely have some type of implant that will truly make us “one” with technology. Trust me, it’s coming. Just take a look at the augmented reality glasses we reported on. The Meta Pro Glasses could eventually be combined with wireless access to Watson’s endless knowledge, basically making us all, potentially, into cyborgs.

The Singularity is coming!

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