E13 Patricia Scanlon, CEO and Founder of Soapbox Labs

In episode 13, CEO and founder of Soapbox Labs Patricia Scanlon discusses what inspired her to set up Soapbox Labs, the challenges that arise building voice AI for kids, how speech recognition has exploded in the past couple of years and much more

Welcome to episode 13 of AI in Action, the podcast that breaks down the hype and explores the impact that Data Science, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence are making on our everyday lives.

Our goal is to share with you the insights of technologists and data science enthusiasts to showcase the excellent work that is been done within AI in Ireland.

Today’s guest is Patricia Scanlon, who is the founder and CEO of Soapbox Labs. Patricia has 20 years of experience working in Artificial Intelligence & Speech Recognition Technology and in 2013, she set up SoapBox Labs after realising speech recognition technology built for adults, such as Amazon Echo or Google Home, doesn’t work as well as it could do for kids.

Soapbox Labs encourages conversation and engagement through entertainment based conversations and education based games. It also helps with speech and pronunciation assessment for reading and English language learning as kids learn to read and build fluency. It is their mission to create “the world’s most accurate and accessible speech technology for children” that support reading and language development, children’s voice-control for IoT devices in the home, smart toys and AR/VR experiences.

In today’s interesting episode, you will learn about:

  • Patricia’s background and what inspired her to set up Soapbox Labs
  • Changes in attitude towards the ever-growing emergence of Voice AI
  • The different challenges that arise from creating a speech recognition technology for children
  • The importance of taking responsibility of your data and data privacy
  • Her opinions on where Voice technology is headed in the next couple of years
  • Exciting projects ahead for Soapbox Labs



What did you make of Patricia’s podcast? Where do you see the future of AI and speech recognition technology heading in the next few years? I would love to hear your thoughts so please leave a comment below.

If you would like to hear more from AI in Action then please subscribe and don’t forget to like and share with your friends on social media.

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AI Awards 2018: Applications Now Open
Connecting Ireland’s AI ecosystem for a higher purpose

Applications are now open for you to take part in the inaugural AI Awards and showcase your skills and expertise to the AI community on the island of Ireland.

The AI Awards is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to promoting, advancing and rewarding corporate and academic excellence in Artificial Intelligence (AI) innovation, research & development and products.

It is our mission to support the AI community by recognising the hard work and dedication of those working in the field and to help promote and market Ireland globally as the first-choice home for AI investment and job creation in research and product development.

For more information about the awards, head over to www.aiawards.ie

Author: AI Ireland

AI Ireland is a non-profit, community-led initiative that aims to showcase and share the knowledge in Data Science, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence. We host monthly meetups, run the AI in Action podcast and will hold the AI Awards this November. Our goal is to bring together players in the field of AI in order to forge and strengthen ties, and to celebrate the development of AI for the greater good.

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