Industry pioneers in travel and technology are announcing WayBlazer, a company that uses leading edge technology to redefine the way consumers dream, plan, personalize and purchase travel. The company is led by Terry Jones, founder of Travelocity and founding chairman of Kayak.com, who serves as chairman; Manoj Saxena, former General Manager of the IBM Watson Group, is co-founder and early investor. WayBlazer utilizes the cognitive power of IBM Watson, which takes massive amounts of information and organizes it, infuses it with intelligence, personalizes it, and learns more with each use. The WayBlazer Insight Engine uses a standards-based cognitive cloud from Cognitive Scale, which is powered by IBM Watson technology. WayBlazer addresses the growing issue of the sheer breadth of options and data required of travelers planning their next destination. On average, users explore 20 or more websites to research flight, hotel, and activity information, while weighing personal preferences and insights from social networks, online review sites and more. WayBlazer will form the industry's most robust travel concierge by letting its customers ask questions using a natural language interface. WayBlazer links places, offers, and preferences, with social, cultural and economic data to recommend targeted travel insights and commerce offers that are tailored and customized for each consumer's experience. "To date, online trip planning has been a complex and time-consuming chore lacking a way to connect, organize and personalize data," said Terry Jones, WayBlazer's executive chairman and co-founder. "WayBlazer, makes sense of the information overload and presents it to consumers as a personal travel concierge. Travel suppliers from destinations and hotels to airlines and rental car sites can use WayBlazer to provide a one-stop solution with personalized recommendations, accelerating the pace and frequency of online bookings." "When IBM (NYSE: IBM) opened the Watson Ecosystem last year, the goal was to attract innovators to create new cognitive apps across many different industries," said Mike Rhodin, Senior Vice President, IBM Watson Group. "WayBlazer is a great example of how Watson can be leveraged as a game changing technology, and in this case, how people plan their vacations." WayBlazer has also partnered with the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau who will use this technology suite across their online channels to source valuable traveler insights to generate relevant, location-aware and bookable content and offers for Austin. "Austin has long been home to technology companies, start-ups and innovators, and with technology changing the way we travel, the Austin CVB is pleased to partner with Austin-based WayBlazer to bring this exciting travel tool to the marketplace," said Bob Lander, Austin CVB President & CEO. "This technology is a real competitive advantage for Austin, and the functionality and industry changing capabilities that WayBlazer delivers creates a trusted travel advisor for any traveler or even locals looking for something new." Austin is also home to IBM's Watson Lab. Comprised of a strong technical and academic community, Austin and greater Texas is now an innovation hub for cognitive computing. The IBM Watson Solutions Lab excels as a development facility that benefits both IBM and its clients, with both learning from each other and exploring new areas for research and innovation. Related Link: WayBlazer