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What is cognitive computing?

We have all this data and no way to use it.

If you printed all of the world's data as books, you could make a stack that reaches ten times from Earth to Pluto. But the amount of data in the world actually doubles every 12 to 18 months, so that stack is growing exponentially. By 2030, it would reach to the nearest star, 4 light-years away.

As if that weren't enough of a challenge, over 80% of that data is "dark," meaning that, until recently, we had no way to analyze it on a large enough scale. It consists of written and spoken word, video, images, facial expressions, gestures, and other unstructured data that traditional computers can't understand.

This is where cognitive computing comes in.

Cognitive shines a light on this dark data. Unlike the rigid "if-then" logic of traditional computers, cognitive technology uses data-mining, pattern recognition, and natural language processing to analyze large-scale unstructured data—allowing us to draw insights far more meaningful than before.

What does this mean for marketers?

Being able to analyze massive amounts of qualitative data means brands can gain deeper insights about their customers and ultimately provide more valuable, personalized experiences that drive new levels of business impact.

Let's get started

What cognitive systems can do:


Cognitive systems can understand imagery, language, and other unstructured data like humans do.


They can reason, grasp underlying concepts, form hypotheses, and infer and extract ideas.


With each data point, interaction, and outcome, they develop and sharpen expertise, so they never stop learning.


With the ability to see, talk, and hear, cognitive systems can interact with humans in a natural way.

Cognitive building blocks

Cognitive technology is typically delivered in the form of cloud-based APIs or “building blocks” that can be combined in unique ways to create valuable customer experiences.

Personality Insights

Natural Language Classifier

+ Retrieve & Rank

= TD Ameritrade: Alvi


Natural Language Classifier

Tone Analyzer

+ Relationship Extraction

= The Young Pope: AiMEN