Jeopardy Watson jeopardy watson
Posted on Tuesday, October 26, 2010 8:39 AM Google Search
The Final Jeopardy
category was “U.S. Categories
s a i d , “W h a t i s
marks denoting its
lack of confidence.
Jennings and Brad
Rutter, both got
the right question, but despite wagering everything (or nearly everything),
Watson finished with $35,734. Jennings had $4,800 and Rutter had $10,800.
Despite an otherwise impressive performance, Watson was soundly mocked on
Twitter for the final mistake. “The machines don’t know all. Yet,” posted @erickohn.
The Double Jeopardy and Final Jeopardy rounds of the first game aired Feb. 15.
The first round of Jeopardy had been broadcast on Monday, and the second game
of the two-game tournament is scheduled for Wednesday.
Watson’s odd answer was a result of several confusing factors, according to David
Ferrucci, whose post-game analysis appeared on IBM’s A Smarter Planet blog.
Jeopardy category names are tricky because they “only weakly suggest” the
expected answer, so Watson tends to downgrade the significance of the category
name when calculating its answer, Ferrucci said. If the question had included “U.S.
city” in the question, it would have given U.S. cities more weight in its search, he
Watson was also probably confused by the fact there are several cities named
Toronto in the United States, and the Canadian Toronto has a baseball team in the
American League, according to Ferrucci. Chicago was the second answer on
Watson’s possible list, according to A Smarter Planet.
Despite the mistake, Ferrucci was pleased with the outcome. With a confidence
level of about 30 percent, it knew it didn’t know the answer, and it had bet
“intelligently,” risking only $947.
Watson’s betting algorithm was in full force, as it found both Daily Double clues in
the round. Watson wagered $6,436 and $1,246, respectively. “I won’t ask,” said
the host, Alex Trebek.
Players often take into account other players’ scores, their confidence and their
gut feeling when making wagers, which allows them to bet aggressively, according
to Stephen Baker, the author of “Final Jeopardy,” a book about Watson. Watson’s
calculations are strictly based on its confidence scores, he said.
It’s hard for a computer to calculate confidence, according to Nico Schlaefer, a