Dr. Watson (of Jeopardy Fame) to Diagnose Diseases

May 24th, 2011

Watson has already obliterated Jeopardy champions. Next up on the roster? IBM is developing Watson to act as a doctor who can diagnose diseases. From Engadget:

Over the past few months, researchers have been stockpiling Watson’s database with information from journals and encyclopedias, in an attempt to beef up the device’s medical acumen. The idea is to eventually sync this database with a hospital’s electronic health records, allowing doctors to remotely consult Watson via cloud computing and speech-recognition technology. The system still has its kinks to work out, but during a recent demonstration for the AP, IBM’s brainchild accurately diagnosed a fictional patient with Lyme disease using only a list of symptoms.

Next up? Watson will be programmed to bluebook footnotes!

Don’t worry about competition with your field, though. As I’ve noted, attorneys for one, need not fear our robotic overlords.