IBM's brainy Watson computer technology learns Japan, partners with Softbank

The IBM Watson super-brainy computing technology, which has helped organize massive data as well as beaten champions on the Jeopardy TV show, is now learning Japanese.

IBM Watson, a unit of the U.S. technology and consulting company, said Thursday it was working with Japanese telecommunications and robotics company Softbank Corp. to share Watson with startups and universities for a variety of consumer applications, starting October.

Watson Senior Vice President Mike Rhodin told reporters Watson is an effective tool in handling a large amount of unstructured data, such as clinical tests, information on drugs and regulations in the legal field.

He says Watson can help teachers, too.