IBM’s supercomputer, Watson, who put reigning Jeopardy champ Ken Jennings to shame, is using his intelligence to fit in with the hip crowd. In an attempt to make Watson understand human interaction, his creators made sure that he was up to date on the most recent vernacular. According to Fortune’s Michal Lev-Ram, if Watson was going to spend most of his time interacting with humans, he needed to understand common human slang.
Watson couldn't distinguish between polite language and profanity — which the Urban Dictionary is full of. Watson picked up some bad habits from reading Wikipedia as well. In tests it even used the word "bullshit" in an answer to a researcher's query.
What better way to learn than through the multitude of websites Watson can use? In particular, he began to pay close attention to UrbanDictionary.com, a popular reference site for youth. Unfortunately, Watson’s creators did not anticipate that he would use Urban Dictionary to learn profanity and insults. Not to worry though, his foul mouth is now gone, as IBM developers wiped that part of his memory clean. Sorry Watson, it was fun while it lasted.
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