After feats like the grand-master chess (remember Deep Blue vs. Garry Kasparov), Rubik’s Cube, Jeopardy, Space X’s space-borne supercomputer; we should have gotten used to being surprised by machines.
But then comes an attempt to equip computers with the ability to ‘truly understand language’ and then be ‘expressive’ – in other words – IBM’s Project Debater.
Yes, a face-off has already happened between this brainy-machine and two humans in two separate debates. What stood out was Debater’s ability to listen to an opponent’s argument, undermine it, guess arguments for pre-emptive attacks and even try some humour.
Alas, areas like relevant data, human dilemma and suggestion of principled arguments also stood out as its weak spots.