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    • October 2013
    • 9780231168564
  • 160 Pages
  • Hardcover
  • $22.95

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    • October 2013
    • 9780231537278
  • 160 Pages
  • E-book
  • $21.99

Smart Machines

IBM's Watson and the Era of Cognitive Computing

John E. Kelly III and Steve Hamm

We are crossing a new frontier in the evolution of computing and entering the era of cognitive systems. The victory of IBM's Watson on the television quiz show Jeopardy! revealed how scientists and engineers at IBM and elsewhere are pushing the boundaries of science and technology to create machines that sense, learn, reason, and interact with people in new ways to provide insight and advice.

In Smart Machines, John E. Kelly III, director of IBM Research, and Steve Hamm, a writer at IBM and a former business and technology journalist, introduce the fascinating world of "cognitive systems" to general audiences and provide a window into the future of computing. Cognitive systems promise to penetrate complexity and assist people and organizations in better decision making. They can help doctors evaluate and treat patients, augment the ways we see, anticipate major weather events, and contribute to smarter urban planning. Kelly and Hamm's comprehensive perspective describes this technology inside and out and explains how it will help us conquer the harnessing and understanding of "big data," one of the major computing challenges facing businesses and governments in the coming decades. Absorbing and impassioned, their book will inspire governments, academics, and the global tech industry to work together to power this exciting wave in innovation.

About the Author

John E. Kelly III is senior vice president and director of IBM Research, one of the world's largest commercial research organizations, with more than 3,000 scientists and technical employees operating in twelve laboratories in ten countries. He also helps guide IBM's overall technical strategy. Kelly's top priorities as head of IBM Research are to stimulate innovation in key areas of information technology and quickly bring those innovations into the marketplace.

Steve Hamm is a writer and videographer for IBM after working in business and technology journalism. Most recently, he was a senior writer at BusinessWeek magazine. He is the author of two books, Bangalore Tiger: How Indian Tech Upstart Wipro Is Rewriting the Rules of Global Competition and The Race for Perfect: Inside the Quest to Design the Ultimate Portable Computer.

If you think the tidal wave of digital disruption is over, think again. Kelly and Hamm pull back the curtain on the next great wave of the computing revolution, which will transform how every industry and business operates in the near future.

David Rogers, author of The Network Is Your Customer: Five Strategies to Thrive in a Digital Age

As Watson's win against Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings showed, IBM's research labs are doing some of the world's most revolutionary research in artificial intelligence and related fields. In this short and very accessible book, the authors outline this work and the wave of 'cognitive computing' that is about the break.

James Hendler, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

This book will give the careful reader an understanding of the immense possibilities offered by the intelligent collaboration of man and machine; armed with this knowledge, readers can then tackle the difficult but essential task of ensuring that these new cognitive technologies will, in practice, be devoted to bettering our lives.

Ralph Gomory, Stern School of Business, New York University

Technological change, from new materials to smart systems, is accelerating, and the latest advances fuel others. John E. Kelly and Steve Hamm show how these technologies will transform our jobs, our cities--even how we think.

Stephen Baker, author of Final Jeopardy: Man vs. Machine and the Quest to Know Everything

IBM's Watson is one of the most important technological breakthroughs in decades, and this is the go-to book for understanding what this new technology is all about and how it will change your life.

Tyler Cowen, George Mason University, author of Average Is Over

This book is a gem... Highly recommended.

Preface by John E. Kelly III1. A New Era of Computing2. Building Learning Systems3. Handling Big Data4. Augmenting Our Senses5. Designing Data-centric Computers6. Inventing a New Physics of Computing7. Imagining the Cognitive CityCoda: An Alliance of Human and MachineNotes

Read the first chapter, "A New Era of Computing" (to view in full screen, click on icon in bottom right-hand corner):