I Am Watson


Ever hear of Watson?  The computer from Jeopardy? Well, a brain and a computer may have a number of similarities after all. THIS ARTICLE explains the ability a brain has toward connecting memories with unfamiliar situations.

Science Daily is a news source that specifically writes about science. Students, professors, researchers, and grant givers use this site all the time to discover new and upcoming discoveries. The couple that started the site in 1995 come from science-based backgrounds and have moved their pursuits to creating a website that markets science of the future. From prehistoric life to computerized futures, this site has it all.

Today, I found out that computer programmers created this "pointer system" to do the same thing with computer processes. For example, when the Blue and White Society sends you a weekly reminder that you haven't joined yet, the email typically says your name specifically. This makes the email more personal for recipients, but it doesn't mean that the email was personally written and sent forward. The computer's "pointer system" fills in an empty hole for names in the email. Similar to how our brain acts when remembering a face.

I find it interesting that in one blog, I can write about how technology learns from nature, but in this one, I'm writing about how we're learning of our nature through technology. Even though the technology is still reflecting on the natural traits, it's teaching us just how the nature of our brain works.

This paradigm just shows how interconnected science and nature truly are, and how humanity has embraced this fact to further it's own natural, and sometimes unnatural, existence.

I'm not sure how this research is really going to help further scientific discovery. It could lead to memory manipulations. All in all, I think it looks as though we've grown to be so obsessed with technology that we're starting to compare ourselves to it on a whole new level. Next thing you know, we'll be living like Will Smith in iRobot and have friends and helpers in enhanced "pointer system" operating robots. Maybe not in our life time, but the precursors are definitely there. From this research to the Roomba vacuum cleaners, which seem to have some sort of pointer toward dirt, I can't see droid robots being too far off.


Picture Source: (http://blogs.plos.org/retort/2011/02/14/how-ibm's-watson-computer-will-excel-at-jeopardy/)


I'm going to be honest, most of the information you put in this post went right over my head. The human brain is something that is absolutely incredible. It does so many things that we just can't even begin to understand or explain. However, the thought of our brain working more like technology is a little creepy. It seems like everything in our society is being taken over my computers or the newest technology, but I never thought the way our brains worked would be compared to technology. As you said, our society is really starting to be more and more obsessed with technology. In some ways it can be good because science is doing ground breaking research because technology is so advance now, but in other cases, it's taking away from people's intelligence. For some stats on how the internets is growing, click on the link below!


Mackenzie, it's all right no worries, I will break it down for you. Waston is a computer system created by IBM that has the ability to answer questions and also that same system is used in the game show Jeopardy. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watson_(computer) ....

I will use key sections from the article to break it down because my explanation will confuse you, and I don't want to do that, with that being said lets get back to the comprehensive part.

- "The pointer system, are used to tell a computer where to look for information stored elsewhere in the system to replace a variable."

- "For example, in the sentence, "I want to desk you," we understand the word "desk" is being used as a verb even though our past experience with the word "desk" is as a noun."

- "Computers routinely complete similar tasks. In computer science, for example, a computer program could create an email form letter that has a pointer in the greeting line. The pointer would then draw the name information for each individual recipient into the greeting being sent to that person."

- "In the brain, for example, the pointer-like system must still be learned. The brain has to be trained, in this case, to understand sentences while a computer can be programmed to understand sentences immediately."

......I hope that helped a little

Whenever I read these blogs I find myself comparing them to movies or crazy extremes. For example, after reading this I started thinking of the Terminator where a robot takes complete control. I know that we control our "robots" (technology) but it scares me how smart robots can be. Technology advancement has truly evolved over the last 40 years or so. I remember watching Chitty Chitty Bang Bang was I was little and now I'm starting to see car commercials where cars can park themselves. The cares don't actually park themselves, but they assist the driving in doing so. The article below explains how technology helps us park cars but not by themselves. This definitely reduces the stress of robots taking over the earth. http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2012/12/06/self-parking-cars-challenge/1743199/

Honestly, the progression of technology in society is quite scary. To think that technology can do simple things such as inserting that name in an e-mail makes you wonder just what it could do next. Movies like iRobert take it to an extreme, but how far are we from a world engulfed in technology? I found this article from yahoo, http://voices.yahoo.com/technology-good-bad-argument-365539.html?cat=9, that discusses the good and the bad of technology. Especially thinking of a computer system as similar to the brain is just as scary of a concept. Maybe technology is developing a little too fast in this society.

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