IBM's Watson Studying Up to Diagnose Illnesses

Monday, May 23, 2011  |  Updated 1:41 PM PDT
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IBM's Watson Studying Up to Diagnose Illnesses

AP

Watson is moving on from playing games to diagnosing diseases.

IBM's Watson computer may have made headlines beating human opponents on Jeopardy, but it's got a new, less glamorous job ahead of it: making medical diagnoses.

Watson became a Jeopardy champ by devouring all sorts of reference texts, such as encyclopedias and history books, as well as primary cultural sources such as novels and film scripts. But now, it's loading up on medical journals and textbooks, as well as medical sites and forums online, trying to become as adept at figuring out what's wrong with somebody as it was at picking up on wordplay-filled trivia questions.

We're still years off from Dr. Watson telling you that you've got Lupus, but it's likely to have a huge impact on the medial field once doctors are able to harness its power and huge knowledge base.

PhysOrg via PopSci

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