You know it’s only a matter of time before Skynet goes online. We’ve already seen what IBM Watson can do when it faces off against two of the best Jeopardy players of all time, but now we’re going to see how it can handle the ongoing financial crisis on Wall Street. That’s because the Watson supercomputer from IBM is going be used by Citigroup.
Before making the jump to Wall Street, IBM’s Watson has already been busy working for health care organizations, putting its natural language interpretation skills to good use. With the new job at Citigroup, Watson will work primarily with risk management, helping to “analyze customer needs and process financial, economic and client data to advance and personalize digital banking.”
To get Watson ready for the job, Citigroup is training our robot overlord about regulatory practices and financial jargon. Presumably, Watson will be a little more ethical than some of the not-so-nice people on Wall Street, sticking to the facts and minimizing the shady practices. Then again, Watson can only be as ethical as its employers that program it.
There are already plenty of people who use computer programs to pick their stocks, make their trades, and otherwise guide their financial decisions. This is just the next logical step.