IBM CEO: Artificially intelligent computers will 'change who you are'

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IBM CEO Ginni Rometty has a pretty startling vision for the future.

She sees the day when every decision humans make —from what we eat to how businesses operate — are done in consultation with human-like computers.

This won't just change your routines, she believes "It will change who you are," she told a crowd during a keynote speech at Consumer Electronics Show Wednesday night.

IBM is working on making such super intelligent, human-like machines (which IBM calls "cognitive computing").

"This is an era of systems you do not program. They understand, they reason and they learn," she explains.

Click through some of the best gadgets from CES 2016:

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IBM CEO: Artificially intelligent computers will 'change who you are'
Attendees demonstrate the Royole-X foldable smart mobile theater device during the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., on Thursday, Jan. 7, 2016. CES is expected to bring a range of announcements from major names in tech showcasing new developments in virtual reality, self-driving cars, drones, wearables, and the Internet of Things. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images
The SensorWake olfactory alarm clock is displayed with scent cartridges at the CES 2016 consumer electronics show in Las Vegas, Nevada, January 7, 2016. Capsules with scents such as coffee, croissants, toast, the ocean, or money are inserted in the alarm clock to wake a sleeping person. AFP PHOTO / ROBYN BECK / AFP / ROBYN BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
CES signage is seen outside the Las Vegas Convention Center, January 7, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the CES 2016 Consumer Electronics Show. AFP PHOTO / DAVID MCNEW / AFP / DAVID MCNEW (Photo credit should read DAVID MCNEW/AFP/Getty Images)
Parrott Jumping Minidrones are displayed on the first day of CES 2016 Consumer Electronics Show on January 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. AFP PHOTO / ROBYN BECK / AFP / ROBYN BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - JANUARY 06: A view inside the Whirlpool French Door Bottom Mount Refrigerator is shown at CES 2016 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center on January 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The USD 3,799 connected, pantry-inspired refrigerator features a party mode for when you are having guests that makes ice and cools down quickly and the temperature for individual drawers can be adjusted using a Whirlpool app. CES, the world's largest annual consumer technology trade show, runs through January 9 and is expected to feature 3,600 exhibitors showing off their latest products and services to more than 150,000 attendees. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Mimoco's Star Wars: The Force Awakens USB backup battery tubes are displayed on the first day of CES 2016 Consumer Electronics Show on January 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The 90mm (3.5 inches) tall backup power is a single cell rechargeable backup battery that provides power to smartphones and other 5V mobile devices. The Force Awaken power tubes will be for sale in early 2016 for between USD $20-30 and can be ordered online. AFP PHOTO / ROBYN BECK / AFP / ROBYN BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - JANUARY 06: The Whirlpool French Door Bottom Mount Refrigerator is displayed at CES 2016 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center on January 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The USD 3,799 connected, pantry-inspired refrigerator features a party mode for when you are having guests that makes ice and cools down quickly and the temperature for individual drawers can be adjusted using a Whirlpool app. CES, the world's largest annual consumer technology trade show, runs through January 9 and is expected to feature 3,600 exhibitors showing off their latest products and services to more than 150,000 attendees. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Exhibitors ride Razor Hovertrax Hover Boards during ShowStoppers at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016. CES is expected to bring a range of announcements from major names in tech showcasing new developments in virtual reality, self-driving cars, drones, wearables, and the Internet of Things. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images
An exhibitor demonstrates the ZEISS VR ONE headset during ShowStoppers at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016. CES is expected to bring a range of announcements from major names in tech showcasing new developments in virtual reality, self-driving cars, drones, wearables, and the Internet of Things. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images
An exhibitor demonstrates the Jabra Intelligent Headset during ShowStoppers at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016. CES is expected to bring a range of announcements from major names in tech showcasing new developments in virtual reality, self-driving cars, drones, wearables, and the Internet of Things. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images
LAS VEGAS, NV - JANUARY 06: The Whirlpool Smart Front Control Range is displayed at CES 2016 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center on January 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. A Whirlpool app allows a user to pre-heat the connected stove remotely, cook while away and if you send it recipes it will tell you how to cook them. It will be available in the second quarter of 2016 for about USD 1,900. CES, the world's largest annual consumer technology trade show, runs through January 9 and is expected to feature 3,600 exhibitors showing off their latest products and services to more than 150,000 attendees. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Dylan Hixon tries out a augmented reality system for business communications under development by Ricoh at the CES 2016 Consumer Electronics Show on January 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. AFP PHOTO / DAVID MCNEW / AFP / DAVID MCNEW (Photo credit should read DAVID MCNEW/AFP/Getty Images)
Two SmartPlates by Fitly are displayed on the first day of CES 2016 Consumer Electronics Show on January 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The SmartPlate has digital cameras to help dieters take better control of their meals. The cameras use object recognition algorithms to identify the types of food placed in the plates sections and then searches an online database to grab calorie and nutrition data. Embedded load sensors enable the plate to weigh the food too and will send all the data to an accompanying app. AFP PHOTO / ROBYN BECK / AFP / ROBYN BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - JANUARY 06: Polaroid's iZone mini Wi-Fi digital camera is displayed at CES 2016 at the Las Vegas Convention Center on January 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. CES, the world's largest annual consumer technology trade show, runs through January 9 and is expected to feature 3,600 exhibitors showing off their latest products and services to more than 150,000 attendees. (Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - JANUARY 06: IBM Chairman, President and CEO Ginni Rometty delivers a keynote address at CES 2016 at The Venetian Las Vegas on January 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. CES, the world's largest annual consumer technology trade show, runs through January 9 and is expected to feature 3,600 exhibitors showing off their latest products and services to more than 150,000 attendees. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
The Faraday Future FFZERO1 Concept car is displayed on the first day of the CES 2016 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada. AFP PHOTO / ROBYN BECK / AFP / ROBYN BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
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The ultimate example she gave was IBM's Watson, the smart, talking computer that can learn, reason, analyze.

Watson is still best known for winning Jeopardy in 2011 but it has "come a long way since then," Rometty said to the crowd.

"At that time what Watson could do was question and answer (which he did beat everyone) and he had five technologies," she says. Today Watson does 32 different functions with expertise in 50 different areas.

IBM has since turned the Watson technology into a bunch of different cloud computing services, allowing developers to embed its smarts into their apps or their devices.

Business InsiderSo far, IBM has 80,000 developers in 36 countries who have put Watson into their apps or products, she said during the speech. IBM has another 500 Watson partners who provide additional offerings or services for Watson.

IBM continues to roll out more flavors of Watson, too, like a new Internet of Things-specific Watson unit and a health care-specific one. (Rometty believes that IBM will help usher in a new area of personalized, affordable health care, and that this will be one of her biggest legacies).

Meanwhile, there's an increasingly long list of companies using Watson to create everything from Under Armor's new uber-personalized fitness app to a popular Japanese robot called "Pepper" doing the job of customer service rep at retail, banks, hotels and other places.

Still, she says, IBM has even bigger plans to make Watson more human.

"We're expanding Watson's senses, giving him things like sight. The first way he's learning sight is by reading medical images," she explains.

She didn't mention giving Watson a sense of smell or taste, but he does already cook. There's a version called Chef Watson.

Business InsiderRometty has been under intense pressure from Wall Street throughout 2015 as she revamps IBM to become the company she envisions.

She's been selling off business units and reducing IBM's workforce (by selling units and through layoffs). Revenue has been in decline.

In the meantime, under her reign, she's been aggressively investing in Cognitive Computing and related businesses. She's plowed about $26 billion into it, IBM says, including more than 30 acquisitions of analytics related technologies.

Rometty says that her shift is already paying off. IBM's growth businesses were generating over $25 billion by the end of 2014 and "through the third-quarter of this year, they've grown 30%," she said at CES.

These units include analytics, computer security tech, cloud computing services and selling cloud computing technology for companies to install in their own private data centers (a traditional IBM business).

In the meantime, she's out to explain her vision of smart computers in our lives and changing who we are.

"I believe we will all reinvent ourselves. And you see a reinvented IBM emerging," she says, adding that she believes that IBM's smart computer technologies will reach millions "if not billions of individuals."

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