Texas hospital struggles to make IBM's Watson cure cancer

PCWorld

If IBM is looking for a new application for its Watson machine learning tools, it might consider putting health care providers' procurement and systems integration woes ahead of curing cancer. The fall-out from that project has now prompted the resignation of the cancer center's president, Ronald DePinho, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday. The university recently published an internal audit report into the procurement processes that led it to hand almost $40 million to IBM and over $21 million to PwC for work on the project, almost all of it without board approval. It noted that the scope of its review was limited to contracting and procurement practices and compliance issues, and did not cover project management and system development activities. The audit "should not be interpreted as an opinion on the scientific basis or functional capabilities of the system in its current state," because a separate review of those aspects of the project is being conducted by an external consultant, it said.


Going the distance with AI - Pacific Knowledge Systems

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Nothing seems to inspire a headline in health quite like Artificial Intelligence (AI). Ever since IBM Watson moved from the Jeopardy studios to hospitals and research centres, the industry and world have been abuzz with excited optimism about the revolutionary impact AI would have on diagnosis, treatment and prevention of a myriad of diseases. One of the flagships of this brave new intelligent world was MD Anderson, the cancer centre within the University of Texas who announced in 2013 that they would be using IBM Watson to help eradicate cancer. Finally we were living in the future where technology could help solve some of the most pervasive and devastating diseases on the planet; doing what thousands of doctors, researchers and medical professionals have spent decades working to solve. AI was not only living up to the hype, it was exceeding it.


Watson-based cancer project paused after running aground

Engadget

It's tempting to treat IBM's Watson as a cure-all: just throw some cognitive computing at the problem and you'll make everything better. That can only happen if it's well-implemented, however, and we've just seen what happens when things go awry. The University of Texas' MD Anderson Cancer Center has put its highly-touted Watson project (the Oncology Expert Advisor) on hold after an audit discovered both spending issues and an unfocused strategy that didn't meet goals. Where tech companies often foot the bill for projects like this, MD Anderson paid the $62 million for the project itself, ducking around usual procedures in the process. Former genomic medicine chair (and wife of MD Anderson's president) Lynda Chin reportedly didn't get approval from the center's IT department, and ensured that payments to IBM were just low enough to not require board approval.


MD Anderson Benches IBM Watson In Setback For Artificial Intelligence In Medicine

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It was one of those amazing "we're living in the future" moments. In an October 2013 press release, IBM declared that MD Anderson, the cancer center that is part of the University of Texas, "is using the IBM Watson cognitive computing system for its mission to eradicate cancer." Well, now that future is past. The partnership between IBM and one of the world's top cancer research institutions is falling apart. The project is on hold, MD Anderson confirms, and has been since late last year.


MD Anderson Benches IBM Watson In Setback For Artificial Intelligence In Medicine

#artificialintelligence

It was one of those amazing "we're living in the future" moments. In an October 2013 press release, IBM declared that MD Anderson, the cancer center that is part of the University of Texas, "is using the IBM Watson cognitive computing system for its mission to eradicate cancer." Well, now that future is past. The partnership between IBM and one of the world's top cancer research institutions is falling apart. The project is on hold, MD Anderson confirms, and has been since late last year.