In 2019, IBM introduced the world to Project Debater: an AI system that could go up against humans to debate anything. In this episode, we trace Project Debater’s growth from just an idea to a fully fledged piece of technology and the public debates it’s engaged in. And it raises a bigger question: is persuasion a fundamentally human ability or is it really something that machines are capable of?
Correction: In the original version of this episode, I mistakenly reported that “AlphaGo” was another one of IBM’s grand challenges. It was in fact a project by DeepMind, which was acquired by Google in 2014. The episode has been corrected.
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