Lunch with IBM’s Watson

Cognitive computing, artificial intelligence, or augmented intelligence: no matter what name is used, this disruptive technology will create transformative change in many industries. The Calgary Chapter September luncheon event was organized to ensure that our CIOCAN members aren’t blind-sided by this phenomenon. Those who were able to join us had the chance to explore with market leaders in this space how AI is being applied in other verticals.
On September 29, our members had the opportunity to learn about the innovations and business development approaches behind IBM’s Watson initiatives from Michael Rhodin, Senior Vice President, Watson Business Development for IBM. Michael led us through the history behind Watson, the portfolio of technologies that make up Watson, and his vision for how Watson will change our use of digital technologies within businesses and for societal benefit. Michael’s view is that Watson presents significant breakthroughs in augmenting human intelligence through providing a new type of “expert colleague” for learning, accessing and assessing large amounts of unstructured data, understanding unstructured questions and discussion, and presenting an ordered set of alternative conclusions or assessments for consideration by the “human” colleagues.
Watson Health is the best developed of the various initiatives so far, and we had an opportunity to discuss how the lessons learned and capabilities developed in that domain may benefit other domains. We were encouraged to bring our own ideas and innovative initiatives forward to explore with the Watson technology teams as they continue to develop AI capabilities.