Jeopardy Computer Trounces Humans On Day 2

Watson wins big despite naming Toronto as US city
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 15, 2011 10:53 PM CST
Jeopardy Supercomputer Slips Up But Still Wins Big On Day 2 of IBM Challenge
Contestants Ken Jennings, left, and Brad Rutter and a computer named Watson compete on "Jeopardy."   (AP Photo/Jeopardy Productions, Inc., Carol Kaelson)

Watson trounced its human opponents on the second day of the 3-day Jeopardy challenge, but humanity saved some face after the IBM supercomputer goofed on the final question. The category was US cities and the clue was "Its largest airport was named for a World War II hero; its second for a World War II battle." The two human contestants correctly answered "Chicago" while Watson answered "Toronto," reports the Huffington Post.

The computer—which correctly answered 24 out of 30 question in the Double Jeopardy round—had only wagered $975, however, and it finished the game with $35,734 to Brad Rutter's $10,400 and Ken Jennings' $4,800. The manager of the Watson project says the computer was probably confused by the fact that there are cities called Toronto in the US, and the Toronto in Canada has a baseball team in the American league. If Watson finishes a winner when the challenge wraps up Wednesday, IBM will donate the $1 million prize to charity. (More game show stories.)

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