LAST OCTOBER, 11-YEAR-OLD Evan Spisak wandered down to his father’s basement workshop to help out on a weekend project, a time-honored tradition in homes across the country. But Evan’s father, Mike, is an IBM master inventor. And what they came up with was Havyn, a homegrown voice assistant that taps into IBM’s enormous cybersecurity infrastructure, putting Watson’s AI smarts at their beck and call.
While Spisak likens his creation to Tony Stark’s “Jarvis” AI assistant, the shortest path to understanding its importance isn’t though comics mythology. Think of Havyn, instead, as a highly specific analog to Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant. Instead of connecting users to Spotify or online shopping carts, it helps fight cyberthreats.
And while Havyn may have started as spare-time tinkering, a dozen analysts at IBM’s X-Force Command Centers are already testing it in the real world.