IBM Natural Language Understanding. Photo from IBM.

Published: March 19th, 2020

IBM recently announced plans to integrate Project Debater technologies into Watson throughout the year.

This represents the first commercial availability of key technologies from the company’s Project Debater, IBM’s first artificial intelligence (AI) system designed to debate humans on a variety of topics. It makes use of work from IBM Research on listening comprehension, data-driven speechwriting, and modelling human dilemmas.


Project Debator poses strong argument in favour of AI


Making the technology powering Debator available through Watson will help businesses mine and analyze various challenging aspects of the English language with greater clarity, for greater insights, according to Rob Thomas, general manager of IBM Data and AI.

“Language is a tool for expressing thought and opinion, as much as it is a tool for information,” said Thomas in a press release. “This is why we’re harvesting technology from Project Debater and integrating it into Watson – to enable businesses to capture, analyze, and understand more from human language and start to transform how they utilize intellectual capital that’s codified in data.”

In addition, IBM is also introducing technology from IBM Research for better understanding of business documents including business contracts and PDFs, to their AI models. 

IBM has carried out extensive projects in natural language processes (NLP), developing technologies that enable computer systems to understand, learn and analyze human language – including intonations, dialects, sentiment, and more – with better accuracy as well as speed. The company is also bringing its NLP technology to market via Watson. Its NLP infused products include IBM Watson Assistant for virtual agents, Watson Discovery for document understanding, and Watson Natural Language Understanding for advanced sentiment analysis.

The updates will be sprinkled out throughout the year across the Watson platform.

The sentimental analysis capabilities will be integrated into Watson Natural Language Understanding this month, and into Watson Discovery later this year. The Summarization tools, which pull textual data from a variety of sources to provide users with a summary of what is being said and written about a particular topic, is planned to be added to IBM Watson Natural Language Understanding later in the year. Lastly, the Clustering tools, which lets users cluster incoming data to create meaningful “topics” of related information that can then be analyzed, will be integrated into Watson later this year.



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