Foul Play is suspected....The problem is that it wasn't really a equal contest. Watson was fed the 'answers' by a text file, which in terms of processing time means it had more than likely arrived at the possible 'questions' before Alex even finished reading the 'answer'.
If it was really going to be fair, they would have required the computer to process the 'answer' with voice and/or character recognition software, because that's how we humans do it. I'm not suggesting the computer would have lost, just that they skipped an important and critical step with regards to processing and understanding information. The point is, Watson is on some level an exercise in AI (or 'AI completeness'). Is it fair then, to skip over the critical process of sensory perception in the context of human intellect? I personally don't think so. In that regard, It was sort of like Casey Martin being allowed to use a golf cart. Granted, Eddie Timanus was granted a few special accords when he won 5 straight games, but he still had to process the clue as it was read.
But enough of that. This is a bike racing blog, right? Well, last weekend I went on my first road ride of the year with Matt Simpson and Justin Spinelli. Justin has been doing all his road riding on an old stump jumper with a rigid fork and one chainring, so Matt texted me and suggested I bring my IF. No problem....sort of.
I grabbed the wrong shoes when I left the house. My IF has crank Bros pedals and these shoes had Time ATACS. I didn't realize it until I tried to clip in. Matt came to the rescue with a pair of mavic shoes that had Crank Bros cleats. We were off. Destination Warner Hill in Derry.
We got in just under two hours of solid riding, and according to Garmin about 35 miles with 2500 feet of climbing. I got dropped a few times on some of the longer hills, but i wasn't too worried about that. I've done no real cardio work since december, concentrating instead on free weights, and hell, it's still fucking february. Besides that, I had my "endurance" breakfast before the ride (bacon, egg, and cheese bagel, hash browns, milk, OJ, and coffee), so I wasn't going to go very fast, but I certainly wouldn't get hungry for the projected 2ish hour ride. At one point both Matt and Justin were eating, and matt offered me a bite. I explained my breakfast and added "I won't be going too fast, but I'll go pretty far".
The only real issue I had was a pain that popped up in my right knee, especially when seated and spinning. I ended up getting out of the saddle on every climb for the last 45 minutes or so. Since I had the strength from the weight training it was actually easier for me to stand on a heavy gear than sit and spin, and I was actually keeping better contact over the longer hills than when I was sitting. I found out after the ride that was partly because Justin had started to bonk. He had put over an hour in before he met us, pushed the pace up all the climbs, and still had an hour to ride home. I was reminded of a quip by Kerry Litka that "Justin will go out for a 5 hour ride, then go home and eat a carrot". (Ok, maybe it wasn't justin she was talking about, and it might not even have been Kerry, but it's still funny). In any case, Justin always was faster than me, and probably always will be, so I can't criticize his training techniques.
Still, other than the knee pain, I didn't feel too bad, didn't have any problems staying with them on the shallower hills and flats, and had no problems getting back on when I did get dropped on the climbs.
I think this weekend I'll finally get out on Ice Bike.
H.N.T. (again, foul play was suspected)