Voices in AI – Episode fifty five: A Dialog with Rob Top


Approximately this Episode

Episode fifty five of Voices in AI options host Byron Reese and Rob Top speaking approximately IBM Watson and the historical past and long run of AI. Rob Top is an IBM fellow, VP and Leader Technical Officer at IBM Watson.

Seek advice from www.VoicesinAI.com to hear this one-hour podcast or learn the whole transcript.

Transcript Excerpt

Byron Reese: That is Voices in AI, delivered to you through GigaOm. I’m Byron Reese. August 12th, 1981. That used to be the day IBM launched the IBM PC and who may have imagined what that might result in? Who might’ve ever idea, from that vantage aspect, of our global nowadays? Who may just’ve imagined that at last you possibly can have one on each and every computer after which they might all be hooked up? Who may have guessed that thru the ones connections, trillions of greenbacks of wealth can be created? All of the firms, you realize, that you simply see within the information on a daily basis from eBay to Amazon to Google to Baidu to Alibaba, they all have, in come what may, because the seed in their genesis, that second on August twelfth, 1981.

Now the fascinating factor approximately that date, August of ‘eighty one, that’s more or less on the brink of start the varsity yr, the top of the summer time. And it so occurs that our visitor, Rob Top graduated from UC Santa Cruz in 1981, so he graduated approximately the similar time, only a few months prior to this PC tool used to be launched. And he went and joined up with IBM. And for the final 36/37 years, he has been fascinated about that group affecting what they’re doing, staring at all of it occur, and in the event you take into accounts it, what a adventure that will have to be. For those who ever pay your respects to Elvis Presley and notice his tombstone, you’ll see it says, “He was a dwelling legend in his personal time.” Now, I’ll be the primary to mention that’s somewhat redundant, proper? He used to be both a dwelling legend or a legend in his personal time. That being stated, if there’s any one who may also be stated to be a dwelling legend in his personal time, it’s our visitor nowadays. It’s Rob Top. He’s an IBM fellow, he’s a VP at IBM, he’s the Leader Technical Officer at IBM Watson and he’s with us these days. Welcome to the display, Rob!

Rob Top: Yeah, thanks very so much. I take pleasure in the references however come what may I feel my youngsters may believe the ones accolades to be slightly, more than likely, you recognize, now not correct.

Smartly, however from a real point of view, you joined IBM in 1981 while the PC used to be up to date.

Yeah – I’ve actually been venerated with having the chance to paintings on a few in point of fact fascinating issues through the years. And with that honor has come the duty to deliver worth to these issues, to the answers we now have for the ones issues. And for that, I’ve all the time been smartly-known. So I do get pleasure from you bringing that up. In reality, it actually is extra than simply anybody individual on this global that makes adjustments significant.

Smartly, so stroll me again to that. Don’t fear, this isn’t going to be a walk down reminiscence lane, however I’m curious. In 1981, IBM used to be in fact great, as mammoth as it’s now and the PC needed to be one of those tiny a part of that at that second in time. It used to be new. While did your own trajectory intercept with that or did it ever? Had you all the time been at the larger gadget aspect of IBM?

No, in fact. It used to be virtually speedy. Most likely used to be, I don’t recognize the precise quantity, however more than likely I used to be lovely on the subject of the primary 100 or 2 hundred people who ordered a PC while it were given introduced. If truth be told, the very first thing I did at IBM used to be to take the PC into paintings and display my colleagues what the prospective used to be. I used to be simply doing easy, foolish issues on the time, however I sought after to make an impact that this actually used to be going to switch the best way that we have been enthusiastic about our roles at paintings and what generation used to be going to do to lend a hand amendment our trajectory there. So, no, I in fact had the privilege of being there on the very starting. I gained’t say that I had the foresight to acknowledge its application however I surely liked it and I feel that to some degree, my very own profession adopted the trajectory of amendment that has took place very similar to what PCs did to us again then. In different spaces as smartly: together with internet computing, and repair orientation, now cloud computing, and naturally cognitive computing.

And so, stroll me thru that after which allow’s bounce into Watson. So, stroll me during the trail you went thru as this entire drama of the pc age spread out round you. The place did you move from aspect to indicate to indicate thru that and finally end up the place you at the moment are?

Pay attention to this one-hour episode or learn the whole transcript at www.VoicesinAI.com 


Byron explores problems round synthetic intelligence and mindful computer systems in his new ebook The Fourth Age: Sensible Robots, Mindful Computer systems, and the Long run of Humanity.

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