IBM Watson HackathonLast week, I spent two longs days in Brooklyn with over a hundred developers. I watched as ambitious ideas brought together teams and teams pulled together incredible applications. The hurried hackers moved from bean bags to crowded tables to the stage as they refined, redefined, and designed their solutions, incorporating the artificial intelligence technologies available on the Watson Developer Cloud. By ten o’clock Tuesday night, thirty-five teams had finished presenting the products of their ideation, and you could color me impressed. Of the thirty-five teams, at least 20 incorporated the AlchemyAPI services, giving me a fresh look at the possibilities yielded by cloud access to cutting edge technology. Applications of our NLP and image recognition APIs spanned a range of industries, including education, healthcare, and finance. Many of the applications incorporated a variety of services, combining AlchemyAPI tools with other Watson solutions such as Personality Insights and Speech to Text. If you would like to see all the creative projects that resulted from the World of Watson Hackathon, check out the gallery on ChallengePost. Here are three of my personal favorites:
    • Fetch
      fetch Fetch is the ultimate tool for students attending lectures. The mobile app transcribes the audio of a lecture using Watson Speech to Text. The resulting transcription is analyzed using AlchemyAPI’s keyword, entity, and concept extraction endpoints. This collection of meta-data is used to find relevant supporting materials, enhancing the learning experience.

    • Whatson News
      whatson Whatson News is a financial industry tool for analyzing news related to specific firms. A user selects which companies they wish to track, and the app queries the brand new AlchemyData News service to bring back information such as sentiment, relevant news articles, and related topics. The team behind Whatson News even hosted their app on Bluemix, so you can try it out!

  • Debug Democracy
    debug Debug Democracy fits into the category of applications that I wish is commercially available. The idea is this: analyze the airwaves using AlchemyAPI’s keyword extraction and face detection, looking for any signs of political mumbo-jumbo. When detected, interrupt the feed with some pleasing message that reminds people of the finer things in life. The demo is still in development, but it shows an impressive effort from a one-man team.

This post originally appeared on the Alchemy API blog.

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