Inspiration

Knowtworthy is a startup that all three of us founded together, with the mission to make meetings awesome. We have spent this past summer at the University of Toronto’s Entrepreneurship Hatchery’s incubator executing on our vision. We’ve built a sweet platform that solves many of the issues surrounding meetings but we wanted a glimpse of the future: entirely automated meetings. So we decided to challenge ourselves and create something that the world has never seen before: sentiment analysis for meetings while transcribing and attributing all speech.

What it does

While we focused on meetings specifically, as we built the software we realized that the applications for real-time sentiment analysis are far more varied than initially anticipated. Voice transcription and diarisation are very powerful for keeping track of what happened during a meeting but sentiment can be used anywhere from the boardroom to the classroom to a psychologist’s office.

How I built it

We felt a web app was best suited for software like this so that it can be accessible to anyone at any time. We built the frontend on React leveraging Material UI, React-Motion, Socket IO and ChartJS. The backed was built on Node (with Express) as well as python for some computational tasks. We used GRPC, Docker and Kubernetes to launch the software, making it scalable right out of the box.

For all relevant processing, we used Google Speech-to-text, Google Diarization, Stanford Empath, SKLearn and Glove (for word-to-vec).

Challenges I ran into

Integrating so many moving parts into one cohesive platform was a challenge to keep organized but we used trello to stay on track throughout the 36 hours. Audio encoding was also quite challenging as we ran up against some limitations of javascript while trying to stream audio in the correct and acceptable format. Apart from that, we didn’t encounter any major roadblocks but we were each working for almost the entire 36-hour stretch as there were a lot of features to implement.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

We are super proud of the fact that we were able to pull it off as we knew this was a challenging task to start and we ran into some unexpected roadblocks. There is nothing else like this software currently on the market so being first is always awesome.

What I learned

We learned a whole lot about integration both on the frontend and the backend. We prototyped before coding, introduced animations to improve user experience, too much about computer store numbers (:p) and doing a whole lot of stuff all in real time.

What's next for Knowtworthy Sentiment

Knowtworthy Sentiment aligns well with our startup’s vision for the future of meetings so we will continue to develop it and make it more robust before integrating it directly into our existing software. If you want to check out our stuff you can do so here: https://knowtworthy.com/

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