The Next Best Thing to Robot Personal Shoppers

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Did you ever think you might have a robot as your personal shopper? Prepare to be #MindBlown.

The latest AI developments might not bring computers any closer to world domination, but they will make holiday shopping a whole lot easier.

The power of IBM's Watson platform, a cognitive computing system which understands human speech and can actually learn, has been harnessed into an app that IBM claims will predict which products are most likely to sell out during the holiday season, according to Fast Company.
hugh jackmanThe app is called IBM Watson Trend, available now for iOS. The app is intended to make Watson's AI into a manageable tool that can be used by the average consumer. It'll show you predictions for top-selling products in three categories - toys, electronics and health and fitness - and tell you why each individual item is trending.

The secret to the smart app involves data mining from Twitter (Fortune reports that IBM has a formal data analysis relationship with the social media platform) as well as ratings and reviews from e-commerce sites and blogs. The Watson app then applies natural language understanding to analyze the results from over 10,000 sites and services. That's a lot of info.

Here's a video that breaks it down for you:

Looking to scoop up the trendiest gifts before they fly off the shelves? Better heed Watson's advice!


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