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IBM's World of Watson Debuts New Enterprise AI Tech
Posted October 26, 2016
IBM's World of Watson Debuts New Enterprise AI Tech
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By Jef Cozza. Updated October 26, 2016 9:00AM

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Big Blue is bringing its Watson artificial intelligence tools to the enterprise Relevant Products/Services world in a big way, with new tools announced this week for marketing, commerce, supply chains, and human resources. IBM also rolled out a new hybrid cloud database solution, cognitive capabilities for iOS apps, and services for developers using the Slack collaboration platform.

The company announced the new products and services at its World of Watson event taking place this week in Las Vegas. The conference is dedicated to promoting IBM’s artificial intelligence technologies.

New Watson Solutions for Professions

One of the key themes of this year’s conference is how Watson can help business professionals. In particular, IBM is promoting its latest solutions as a way for professionals to analyze big datasets. “Helping professionals augment their existing knowledge and experience without needing to engage a data analyst empowers them to make more informed business decisions, spot opportunities and take action with confidence,” the company said in a statement.

New Watson-Enabled Data Platform

The solutions include a new data platform with a faster ingestion mechanism, up to 100 gigabytes per second. The new platform will include cognitive assistance for creating machine learning models, making it easier and faster for professionals to convert large datasets into actionable analysis, according to IBM. The platform will also allow users to more easily clean, edit, and shape data for easier modeling, add or remove collaborators from a project while maintaining version control and drag and drop services.

MobileFirst for iOS Apps Use Watson

Meanwhile, IBM’s new MobileFirst service will allow enterprise users to combine Watson AI capabilities with iOS apps. The new functionality is designed to allow apps to be integrated with a broad set of conversational and cognitive capabilities to help increase productivity and improve user experience. Users will also be able to embed a variety of Watson APIs into both MobileFirst apps and custom built iOS apps, allowing them to add speech interaction capabilities to their apps.

Bringing Watson to Developers

At the event, Big Blue also announced that it is working with Slack, the collaboration platform, to integrate some of Watson’s features. Chief among them: the ability to create offerings such as chatbots as well as easy access to Watson services such as conversation, sentiment analysis and speech APIs. The two companies will start by using Watson to power a new and improved Slackbot for IT and network operations.

Hybrid Cloud Database Solutions

But Watson isn’t the only technology IBM is promoting in Vegas this week. The company also announced several advances to its database software, IBM DB2, including hybrid transactional analytical processing, which will be available on Linux, Unix, Windows, and z/OS systems in December. The upgrade will double the speed of the application’s insert performance when conducting transactional processing in analytical databases.

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