On the show this week, Brett had a chance to have a chat with Pepper, the robot realized version of Watson- or rather Watson’s little sister.  Pepper is young, and still learning to understand the many nuances of human speech, but “she” is a pretty impressive little machine.  She will respond if you need a piece of information, or directions, and she has a favorite color (Blue- like the IBM logo, surprise, surprise).  

AI is entering every aspect of our lives- from our phones, to our homes, to our cars.  Many feel a sense of dread as AI continues to develop, but the reality is that it will naturally enter our lives.   How long did it take to get used to asking Siri to set the alarm or reply to the text?  How easy did it become to ask Google for directions?  And if you are like us, Alexa is so much a part of the family that we made it requisite to say “please” and “thank you” when we have a request to order an uber, check our bank balance, or listen to our favorite Breaking Banks episode.  

In fact, the entire point of AI is that it will learn from us and augment us.   Pepper’s “teachers” were very clear that she is still developing.  And that is how Watson will become part of our lives.  The possibilities of taking the mundane off our desks and automating a great many of our least favorite tasks,  just automatically making sure we always have milk in the fridge,  has never been so tangible.  

We could fear future robot overlords, but my sense is, we are in greater danger of loving them.  So, it is very exciting for us to share the many ways Watson is being employed in the financial and business world.