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Watson plays Pokémon Go – AT&T Hackathon Winner!



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Watson API is a winner with a new Pokémon hack

Pokémon Go has quickly become one of the most used apps beating the previous record held by Candy Crush Saga.

The Pokémon Go game, using augmented reality and GPS, allows players to capture, battle, and train virtual creatures, called Pokémon, who appear on device screens as though in the real world. As the game has taken over, so have the range of ways in which players can out think Pokémon. That’s where IBM’s Watson, and Michael Hsu come in…

This weekend saw Michael Hsu, a front and back-end developer and part-time university lecturer in California, win the Best Use of Watson challenge at the AT&T Shape Tech Expo Hackathon in San Francisco. “I saw the Watson Visual Recognition API and wondered, what if I could get Watson to play Pokémon Go for me?”

Using the Watson Visual Recognition API Michael created a hack that takes periodical screenshots, identifies the Pokémon characters in them, and alerts other users to where the characters are.

Michael Hsu finds Pokemon with Watson’s help

In the video below you can see the winning hacker, Michael, using our Watson IoT platform and the Watson Visual Recognition service. You’ll see what a creative mind can do with the right capabilities and a little inspiration from our evangelists, within the space of just a few hours.

By the end of the hackathon Stefania Kaczmarczyk, a developer evangelist for IBM’s Digital Group commented “Watson can track Pokémon around the world and other players can see there’s a really rare one that I want really bad over here, somebody else found it, now I can go get it…”

“You have hundreds of thousands of players that are now even more invigorated about playing this game and they’re playing it with Watson” concluded Stefania.

You can find out more about Watson IoT, including Watson’s Visual Recognition App along with other IoT API’s in the Watson Developer Cloud and read more about Michael and other hackers projects in the AT&T Shape Tech Expo site. Or get started with yourself, sign up now for a free 30-day trial of Bluemix to start making solutions.

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