Pentagon Enlists Watson to Fix Weapon Buying

Cognitive computing is being enlisted in the latest effort to fix the hidebound U.S. weapon acquisition process.

Specifically, IBM’s Watson has been tapped by the U.S. Air Force to develop new artificial intelligence tools to help manage cumbersome acquisition rules while helping procurement officials and prospective contractors navigate the swamp that is federal purchasing guidelines.

According to a report in the Washington Post, the Air Force was to deploy Watson as a potential “bureaucracy buster” as the service responds to growing calls in Congress to fix the way the Pentagon buys weapons and services. Acquisition reform efforts tend to resurface about once a decade, but this time lawmakers are concerned that faster technology cycles will make costly weapons obsolete by the time they are deployed.

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