IBM Watson, Bob Dylan and the limits of machine intelligence

In a new ad IBM inadvertently suggests the limitations of software analytics

The appearance of Bob Dylan in a YouTube ad for IBM’s Watson machine intelligence services will no doubt cause bien pensant liberals to tut again, even if he is only franking the form extending back to a long line of endorsements from Victoria’s Secret women’s underwear to both Chrysler and Cadillac cars. But this latest spot also raises some interesting questions about the nature of computer learning and its chances of capturing the wayward muse of the exceptional individual.