If you haven't been keeping up to date on IBM Watson since the supercomputer beat "Jeopardy" champion Ken Jennings in 2011, Watson's been really busy. We recently told you that Watson is showing up in pharmacies, for instance.
It can alert you to diseases that you may be at risk for, based on your medical records and your fitness tracker's stats. Plus, IBM created a business unit specifically for Watson, and opened up a New York City headquarters.
Watson has a lot of potential applications. It uses natural language processing and can understand grammar and the contextual meaning of a question. In short, it's a supercomputer crammed with information on a topic, including websites and white papers. It then learns to recognize question-answer patterns related to that topic. (See video next page.)
Now, Watson's smarts are being put to a timely use: helping you do your Christmas and Hanukkah shopping. Watson, it turns out, is now an iOS shopping app, too. It's called IBM Watson Trend.