IBM, AlchemyAPI Democratize AI With APIs
IBM and AlchemyAPI take cognitive computing to the masses. They discussed their experiences providing this technology to help solve societal, medical and other problems.NEW YORK—When IBM opened up its Watson cognitive computing platform to developers last November, it launched an effort to enable anybody with programming skills and an idea to take the technology and use it as a foundation for building apps that can both understand natural language and learn new things to expand its knowledge base. Watson represents a breakthrough in the field of artificial intelligence, and IBM's opening up the platform indicates just how far AI has come. At the GigaOm Structure Data conference here, IBM and AlchemyAPI spoke about their experiences in providing cognitive computing technology to help solve broad societal, medical and other problems, and also to help democratize the use of cognitive technology. Indeed, AlchemyAPI says its goal is to democratize breakthroughs in deep learning to power unstructured data applications. Elliot Turner, CEO of AlchemyAPI, and Stephen Gold, vice president of worldwide marketing and sales operations for IBM's Watson Group, spoke on the issue of democratizing artificial intelligence with APIs. "We're in this new trend—the API economy where you take something complicated and expose it as an API," Turner said. "Cognition is yet another one of those things. "So we're seeing companies leverage unstructured data—things like photographs, videos, chat logs, documents—to make better, more informed business decisions to automate processes. They're leveraging humanlike capabilities inside automated workflows. I think these technologies can ultimately augment what's possible in business and humanity, but not necessarily replace that."
As a society, we are trying to wrap our mind around exactly what is cognition, Gold said.