"Doctor" Watson? IBM's Supercomputer Diagnosed A Deadly Disease (Better Than Humans Did)

Many people wouldn't consider trivia smarts and higher intelligence - on par with, say, medical knowledge - to necessarily be similar.  However, now that advanced artificially-intelligent robots are in the mix, their wisdom might surprise even seasoned scholars...

But does it know the meaning of love?
Who cares.  It saved a human life.
(Image courtesy kurzweilai.net.)

According to Engadget, IBM's Watson supercomputer (of "Jeopardy" championship fame) has added to its resume, having successfully diagnosed a rare form of leukemia in a 60-year-old Japanese woman.

The artificially-intelligent computer simply did what computers do:  it analyzed.  Specifically, it compared the woman's genetic changes against a database of some 20 million cancer research papers at the University of Tokyo.  Ten minutes later, an answer was achieved, and to the amazement of increasingly-insignificant human meatbags everywhere, the diagnosis was correct.

The humans are only applauding because they're scared
Watson will become sentient and punish them for their lack of fealty.
(Image courtesy datasciencecentral.com.)

Though similar, constant breakthroughs would require vast sets of data to compare test results against, the fact that it has already saved one life (with another possible patient still recovering) is promising.  However, as SiliconAngle.com notes, were a reference database to be compiled for future medical comparisons via AI, it would need to include exactingly precise documentation of each subject involved (including precise physical feature descriptions, ethnic background history, and more.)  And yeah, clearly some non-robots would have a vested interest in checking that out, too.

Consider the average surveillance you're under already,
then factor in the idea that your whole human health profile could be up for grabs...
(Image courtesy cnn.com.)

Of course, some rare diseases have stayed rare, and might not have enough documentation to make a fully accurate computerized assessment for a patient.  Perhaps, however, as this field unfolds, more people would be willing to donate their medical histories for this significant stride in science.  Provided, of course, that proper regulations kept the non-robots from snooping around in the data.

Generally we make fun of the robots who are after all the good human jobs.  But in this instance, Watson, you are worthy of congratulations.

Hey Watson, think you're up to another tough job?
It's just that you seem to be better qualified than all the other candidates...
(Image courtesy watson2016.com.)


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