In the eyes of IBM they recently won a huge victory by creating a ones and zeros monster named Watson. This video shows them elated in teary eyed celebration over their creepy contraption's Jeopardy win: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lI-M7O_bRNg
In reality they either "Deep Blued" Trebek like they did Kasparov or they've blindly pushed the envelope of artificial intelligence closer to the end of humanity as we know it. Witness two thirds of the science fiction genre.
My concern is that IBM reaches an artificial intelligence escape velocity while only paying token attention to the consequences. No one is publicly asking "Is this the right thing to do?" Probably because IBM people don't care. Their agenda is more, faster, business domination, fortune and glory. But not everything needs to be explored. Not everything needs to be created. Until we start having serious democratic discussions on what needs to be and what doesn't, we will continue blindly into an irreversible anything goes society while stumbling deeper into Plato's cave, deeper than whence we came.
Also, whats with the Orwellian name? "Watson" is supposed to be the side kick and side kicks are never smarter than the superhero. I just cant trust that face.
Watson is not a step forward, its a step backward by its lack of ethical consideration. We know from past experience how IBM will react to any such criticism.
Here is Kasparov's take on the situation via The Atlantic: