It’s Trebek’s world, we just live in it

With just hours to go until next week’s historic man-vs.-machine Jeopardy! match (Monday-Tuesday-Wednesday, check local listings), the venerable quiz show is experiencing a burst of media “it”-ness to dwarf even the summer of 2004, when a young computer programmer from Salt Lake City taught us how to love…again.

There are pieces on Jeopardy! and IBM’s Watson computer in USA Today and Esquire.com and The Washington Post this morning, with dozens more to come. I should know, I spent all week doing the necessary interviews. (As celebrity interviews go, Watson is right up with there with Harrison Ford, so Brad and I had to take one for the team here.)

But I knew everything had really changed when I heard a few minutes ago that Mubarak had stepped down in Egypt. I hopped over to Slate.com to check out their latest Cairo coverage. The top two pieces on Slate at the moment were both profiles of the “J-Archive,” an on-line database of Jeopardy! clues. (I admit I wondered if the J-Archive’s probably-not-fair-use of 25 years of Jeopardy! IP really wanted this kind of scrutiny…hopefully the Sony lawyers doesn’t mind.)

Welcome to planet Jeopardy!