IBM Set to Expose 50 Watson APIs

IBM plans to extends the number of APIs it exposes to services running on the IBM Watson cloud service from eight to roughly 50 in the coming months.

Speaking at the opening of the new IBM Watson headquarters in New York, IBM Watson Ecosystem CTO Sridhar Sudarsan said the company is conducting a closed beta that will expose a variety of new services, including semantic expansion, discovery, question analysis, knowledge creating, policy evaluation, dialogue and additional cognitive services. Those services can all be accessed via the IBM Bluemix cloud integration platform.

In addition, IBM says it will soon extend Watson's natural language and data ingestion capabilities to include Spanish, Portuguese and Japanese. IBM says it is also working with Topcoder to certify Watson developers to help make sure there are enough developers to meet anticipated demand for Watson applications.

At the event, IBM showed a variety of Watson applications that are generalty available or under development:

  • Red Ant is building a sales training application for mobile devices that makes it easier for sales staff to find product information and track customer preference by launching queries against Watson.
  • LifeLearn is building a Watson application that makes it easier for veterinarians to discover medical knowledge in real time.
  • WayBlazer has created a new travel service that provides suggestions about where to go and what to see based on a traveler’s preferences and history.
  • Findability Sciences is creating a Watson application that helps people who donate funds to charities determine which ones are the most effective.
  • SparkCognition is building a cognitive security application that makes it easier to identify not only anomalies in user behavior, but also what vulnerabilities are being specifically exploited.
  • GenieMD is building a Watson application that makes it easier for individuals to provide care to relatives and friends.

After committing over $1 billion to create the IBM Watson Group, IBM is anxious to get developers on board to build what the company describes as a new generation of cognitive computing applications. The degree to which IBM ultimately succeeds in making that transition occur is dependent on not only the skills of the developers building those applications, but also the quality of the content that the IBM Watson platform gets exposed to when those applications are being developed.

Michael Vizard