Whether you've been following the story of IBM's Jeopardy! Challenge for years, months, days or just happened to catch the first episode of Jeopardy! to feature a computer, named Watson, as a contestant.
Perhaps it was stage fright that caught IBM's super computer in round one of Jeopardy! aired yesterday, February 14.
Today, Watson dominated the "Double Jeopardy" round to take a commanding lead over two of the long-running quiz-show's contestants, Brad Rutter and Ken Jennings.
As was the case in Watson's debut episode, much insight regarding IBM's challenge and how this type of analytical technology can change the future were discussed by host Alex Trebek, and through various video clips featuring dialogue and demonstrations from just a fraction of the many professionals who worked on the project, so that the public could have a greater understanding of Watson's actual purpose.
In today's conclusion of the first match, Watson begin the episode tied with Rutter. However, this time Watson dominated his opposition from both sides (Jennings and Rutter) and also successfully answered two "Daily Double" clues to total over $36-thousand by the time the contestants entered the "Final Jeopardy!" round.
While both Jennings and Rutter wagered their entire earnings in the "Final Jeopardy!" round and correctly answered "Chicago" while Watson failed the question, neither contestant had earned enough to bring their total close to Watson's, even after they doubled it. Watson played it safe in the final round and wagered less than $1,000, so there was no chance of the machine losing its first match against man.
The three-day series of the IBM Challenge will conclude with another match between Watson, Jennings and Rutter on February 16. The contestants totals from the conclusion of today's episode will be added to their earnings for tomorrow and donated to various charities.