Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Johnny Five crashes Data Center Decisions

CHICAGO -- Tech Target's data center conference, Data Center Decisions is well underway. After two days on the road with nearly no sleep I'm starting to see talking robots. Seriously.

There was a talking robot on the expo floor tonight.

Sprockit the robot was a crusing for the show floor. One of the vendors at the show had shelled out some bucks to rent the robot from a talent agency. The story was that the robot was legit -- artificial intelligence. It had amazing voice recognition, it could read, and it could respond to pretty much any statement.

JP Callahan, a former counter-intelligence agent with the U.S. Department of Defense and current security guru at Verizon Business is a born skeptic. He didn't buy into the AI for a minute. We used my Tech Target pull to search behind the scenes for the guy with the headset and monitor.

Unfortunately we never came up with anything, but we both decided that:

A. The onboard equipment for this thing would never support the kind of response times, voice and optic recognition or memory storage needed for the act. The AI apparatus was about the size of a notebook computer.

B. If there was such a piece of AI hardware floating around, some talent agency wouldn't be the ones to own it.

C. It was pretty sweet either way, because I'm still thinking about it now.

Check out our pre-conference Q&A with Callahan that ran today. Assistant editor Adam Trujillo cornered him last week for an interview.


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