As expected, Watson the remorseless trivia machine annihilated Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter in the final leg of the man-versus-computer contest on “Jeopardy.” Despite the result, Jennings — like a nerdy John Connor — struck a decisive blow for humanity’s superiority with the parenthetical notation in his Final Jeopardy response. Let’s see a computer do THAT. What’s that? There’s no algorithm for the humorous application of “Simpsons” quotes? Well, tough microchips, HAL. I’m gonna go celebrate by feeling some emotions and giving myself a boner. Suck it, computers!
Anyway, I’ve made a lot of jokes about the robot apocalypse and whatnot this week, but there’s also, like, charitable stuff happening because of this:
Watson wins $1 million for its efforts, which will be split between World Vision, a relief and development charity, and World Community Grid, whose mission is to, as it sounds, create the world’s largest public computing grid.
Despite a barely there showing yesterday, Jennings bumped himself into second place today, for which he’ll collect $300,000–half of which, he says, is going to VillageReach to benefit remote villages in eastern Africa. Half of Rutter’s $200,000 is going to Lancaster, Pa.’s Community Foundation. [E!]
It’s good that some of the money’s going to remote villages in Africa, because that’s where we’ll want to be when World Community Grid becomes sentient and destroys every aspect of civilization reliant on computers. We’re all doomed! DOOMED I SAY!