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IBM’s Watson AI to help produce Masters highlights

Service will enable fans to choose to receive highlights from their favourite players

IBM is using its artificial intelligence programme Watson to produce customised video highlights for fans at the golf Masters Tournament this weekend.

The company recently debuted My Moments, an automated, personalised highlight reel service that is available for free through and the tournament’s iPhone and Android apps.

The service enables fans to choose to receive highlights from their favourite players. It then uses artificial intelligence to determine when an individual last signed into a Masters digital property so that it can serve them customised highlights they might have missed in between sessions.

Watson’s automated highlights at the Masters are an extension of the “cognitive highlights” technology used to power automated highlights at the US Open last summer. It uses the sound of the crowd and the tone of the commentators, as well as player and crowd gestures, such as fist pumps, to determine a particular shot’s overall excitement level. It then clips and rates these moments against other highlights to determine the best overall moments of a match.

“We had to teach it how to identify the start of a golf shot and how to identity the end of a golf shot,” said John Kent, program manager at IBM’s global sports and entertainment partnerships group. “We trained it on the roar of the crowd, the oos and ahs and the decibel level.”

The AI allows Watson to identify highlights in mass quantities, something that Kent says would “take an army of team members” to do otherwise.

“The AI allows us to deal with the hundreds of hours of video, clip them out and score them,” said Kent.

Watson can also evaluate clips based on statistical data, such as the current score, determine at which hole the shot took place and which player was involved, so that it can populate graphics with metadata.