Computers can do a lot these days, but they can’t process feelings.
After all, that’s what sets humans apart from machine — right?
Not necessarily it seems, as one Kansas-City based artificial intelligence firm is challenging that notion with its text-analyzing tech that not only identifies subjects but also a writer’s sentiment.
A graduate of the Sprint Accelerator, Stride uses AI and natural language processing to scrutinize and summarize digital text. Stride CEO Vijaykant Nadadur said the tool can automate tedious processes such as examining customer reviews and call center notes in a fraction of the time when compared to human analysis.
“This tool offers more consistency, more accuracy and is more time efficient,” he said.
Nadadur said that, when compared to other industry tools, Stride is better at accurately analyzing text as a whole. Nadadur flexed his tech’s muscle in a demo for Startland News.
Nadadur pretended to be a customer writing a negative review in the demo, typing “I have been a customer for several years, but have not once been satisfied with your service.” He first pasted the text into IBM Watson’s analyzer, which yielded a positive sentiment rating. He then pasted the same text into in Stride’s “TEXSIE” platform, which determined the comment was negative.
“What do you think is more accurate?” Nadadur asked.
Nadadur said that he and his co-founder, Sendhil Kumar, first thought of the idea while they attended the University of Kentucky. He said the company is now focused on bringing this technology to the banking and finance industries.
For large enterprises, Stride’s platform is available for licensing. Small- to medium-sized companies can purchase a monthly subscription for the technology.
The French bank Société Général currently uses Stride for enterprise process automation, Nadadur said. When employees of the bank track corporate customers, they process 150 to 200 documents per customer — a process that uses at least three people that spend about nine hours per customer. Nadadur said that Stride helps the bank process one customer every 30 minutes.
Since its launch in 2014, Stride has participated in accelerator programs in France, Chile and most recently, Kansas City’s Sprint Accelerator powered by Techstars. Located in the Kansas City Startup Village, the company now employs 12 people as it snags clients around the world.
A tech guy at heart, Nadadur said the Techstars experience “felt like an MBA packed into three months.” The program gave Nadadur more confidence in his sales and marketing ability.
“Techstars is a very mature organization with the best practices conceived by the best minds in the entrepreneurial world,” Nadadur said. “It’s something you need to experience to understand. It validated our company but also forced us to do some things differently.”
A native of India, Nadadur said it didn’t take long to feel at home in Kansas City. Nadadur said he hopes to keep his team in Kansas City as the firm grows.
“I’ve lived and traveled in many places around the United States,” Nadadur said. “I would pick Kansas City as one of the top three places to live in the United States. In addition to the great location, people are warm and friendly here. I’ve met many people from Kansas City who are passionate about building a strong community. This has forced me to focus on community every time I do something.”