Can a machine outsmart a human? AI goes up against debate champion

In a packed auditorium in San Francisco on Monday night a competition of man versus machine took place. In this case, man won.

A grand finalist at the 2016 World Debating Championship took up the challenge of a live debate against  an artificial intelligence machine in front of an audience of thousands.

Harish Natarajan, 31, from London took on IBM’s latest AI machine following the Watson Project. Project Debate, which resembles a tall speaker with a small screen, has been developed over the course of seven years by a team of dozens of people in multiple countries including Israel and India.

The computer has not only been programmed to produce arguments based on facts, but to also listen and…