In two weeks, IBM’s Watson computer will compete on Jeopardy against two of the show’s all-time human champions. But instead of wondering whether humanity emerge victorious against the rise of the machine, Stephen Wolfram is wondering which machine is better. The physicist behind the Wolfram Alpha “answer engine” just announced the results of his own experiment, which revealed that Google would beat Microsoft’s Bing search engine in any contest based on questions from Jeopardy!
“Wolfram took a sample of Jeopardy clues and fed them into search engines,” explains this technology blog. “When it came to the first page, Google got 69 percent correct, just beating Ask with 68 percent and Bing on 63 percent… To put that into context, the average human contestant gets 60 percent of answers correct, while champion Ken Jennings has a record of 79 percent.” Interestingly, Wikipedia came in last, scoring 23%, though they may have more to do with how Wikipedia handles searches.
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