David Ferrucci

David Ferrucci

Computer Scientist and Watson Co-Creator
AI: A Return to Meaning

David Ferrucci is an award-winning AI researcher. He worked at IBM Research from 1995-2012 where he built and led a team of over 40 researchers and software engineers specializing in Artificial Intelligence (AI). In 2007, Dr. Ferrucci personally took on the Jeopardy Challenge – to create an intelligent computer system that could rival human champions at the game of Jeopardy. Watson, the computer system he and his team built, bested the highest-ranked Jeopardy champions of all time on national television in 2011. Now considered a landmark in AI, Watson delivered amazing results that out-performed all expectations, demonstrating world-class performance at a task previously considered well beyond the capabilities of any computer system. His work transformed IBM’s technical and strategic directions and the perceptions of AI and in business forever. Prior to Watson, Dr. Ferrucci was the chief architect and technical lead for UIMA; a software architecture, framework and standard for unstructured information processing. UIMA provided the foundation for integrating a wide range of text and multi-modal analytics for capturing insights of big-data. UIMA became in open-source APACHE project and is in wide use around the world. In 2011, Dr. Ferrucci was awarded the title of IBM Fellow and Vice President and has won numerous awards for his work on UIMA and Watson, including the Chicago Mercantile Exchange’s Innovation Award 2010 and Watson’s AAAI Feigenbaum Prize 2013. Dr. Ferrucci deeply believes the big advances in Artificial Intelligence will require more than big-data; they will require the tight integration of human cognition, knowledge representation and statistical machine learning. In 2012 he joined Bridgewater as an AI Researcher and Senior Technologist where he is exploring ways to combine learning and semantic technologies to accelerate the discovery, application, and continuous refinement of collaborative intelligent systems in domains including people analytics, enterprise management and markets.