Supercomputing power on demand? IBM (NYSE:IBM) is making it possible by connecting its Watson technology to the cloud, Fool contributor Tim Beyers says in the following video.

For those who don't know, Watson is a supremely effective index of knowledge and information accessible via natural-language query. The technology has proven itself on Jeopardy! no less, and will soon be available to any developer that wants access to the system for creating beefed-up apps. It's a smart move, Tim says.

Why? Watson is a massive (and massively complex) system that would be cost-prohibitive to sell, install, and manage as an on-premises supercomputer. By selling its analytical prowess as a service, Big Blue gets access to more pay-as-you-go customers.

There are also marketing benefits to consider. Putting Watson online exposes a larger audience to the system, which, in the process, should further IBM's reputation as a go-to innovator with the tools to harness big data. More than $16 billion is at stake, Tim says.

Do you agree? Would you use Watson in the cloud for big data projects? Watch the video to get Tim's full take, then leave a comment to let us know what you think.