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“Watson” developer Chris Welty to discuss the Jeopardy-winning computer system on March 23, 2011.

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY—IBM research scientist Chris Welty, a developer of the “Watson” computer system that recently defeated the Jeopardy! game show’s two most successful past champions in a 3-day competition, will describe what goes on “Inside the Mind of Watson” on Wednesday, March 23, at 5:30pm, in Rockefeller Hall, room 200. This event, free and open to the public, is part of the Winifred Asprey Computer Science Lecture Series sponsored by the Department of Computer Science.

“Watson” is a computer system capable of answering rich natural language questions and estimating confidence in those answers at a level of the best humans at the task. Welty will discuss how Watson works and will dive into some of its answers -- both right and wrong -- from the February 14-16 Jeopardy! competition.

Welty is a research scientist at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center in New York. Previously, he taught computer science at Vassar College, taught at and received his Ph.D. from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and accumulated over 14 years of teaching experience before moving to industrial research. His principal area of research is knowledge representation, specifically ontologies and the semantic web, and he spends most of his time applying this technology to natural language question answering as a member of IBM’s DeepQA/Watson team.

In his field Welty is a co-chair of the W3C Rules Interchange Format Working Group, serves on the steering committee of the Formal Ontology in Information Systems Conferences, serves on the board of directors of Principles of Knowledge Representation and Reasoning, Inc., and is on the editorial boards of AI Magazine, The Journal of Applied Ontology, and The Journal of Web Semantics. His work on ontologies and ontology methodology has appeared in Communications of the Association for Computing Machinery and numerous other publications.

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Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential liberal arts college founded in 1861.

Posted by Office of Communications Friday, March 11, 2011