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Smart Machines: IBM’s Watson and the Era of Cognitive Computing

IBM Smart MachinesNow available  from Columbia Business School Publishing:  Smart Machines: IBM’s Watson and the Era of Cognitive Computing—by John E. Kelly III, Director of IBM Research, and Steve Hamm, writer at IBM and former business and technology journalist—introduces readers to the fascinating world of "cognitive systems," allowing a glimpse into the possible future of computing.

Today, the world is on the cusp of a new phase in the evolution of computing--the era of cognitive systems. The victory of IBM’s Watson on the TV game show Jeopardy! signaled the dawn of this new era. Now, scientists and engineers at IBM and elsewhere are pushing the boundaries of science and technology with the goal of creating machines that sense, learn, reason and interact with people in new ways. Cognitive systems will help people and organizations penetrate complexity and make better decisions—potentially transforming business and society. This is a comprehensive perspective on the future of technology and a call for government, academia and the global tech industry to help power this wave of innovation.

Read an excerpt from the book (click on the icon on the bottom right-hand side to view in full screen):


About the authors:

John E. Kelly III is senior vice president and director of IBM Research, one of the world’s largest commercial research organizations with over 3,000 scientists and technical employees at 12 laboratories in 10 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. Kelly received a bachelor of science degree in physics from Union College in 1976. He received a master of science degree in physics from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1978 and his doctorate in materials engineering from RPI in 1980.

Steve Hamm is a writer at IBM. Previously, he was a business and technology journalist, most recently a senior writer at BusinessWeek magazine. He’s the author of two earlier books, Bangalore Tiger, about the rise of the Indian tech services industry, and The Race for Perfect, about innovation in mobile computing. He has a bachelor of arts degree in English and creative writing from Carnegie Mellon University.