We received an email update last night from Kathryn M. Quirk, Vice President of Marketing & Communications at OtoSense (the company behind the smartphone sound alerting app). We were surprised to learn that OtoSense is involved in a number of other endeavors, beyond the scope of their app. The first, and possibly most impressive, bit of news is a new collaboration between OtoSense and the Battlespace Acoustics Division of the United States Air Force Research Lab. More specifically:
the collaboration will focus on creating an autonomous mobile system using OtoSense’s SIR [ Sound Intelligent Recognition ] system linked to helmet-mounted microphones to convert sound-associated risks into actionable alerts for the warfighter in operational settings.
The fact that the US Air Force has entered into such a collaboration says a lot about the credibility of OtoSense’s Sound Intelligent Recognition system (the same recognition system available for 8 bucks in their sound alerting app).
We wanted to understand why the US Air Force was interested in this collaboration, so we dug a little deeper to try and understand. The man behind OtoSense is Sebastien Christian, an inspiring renaissance man with masters degrees in both Physics and Language Science from the Université de Nice-Sophia Antipolis (a top rated university in Nice, France). Sebastien describes his interests on his LinkedIn page:
I’m excited by cognition, language, signal analysis, and artificial intelligence. As I believe that new technologies should first be used where it matters the most, I have been working these past 15 years with and for people with hearing loss, a field where the combination of my skills leads to valuable innovations.
We looked around a little further and found a recent TEDxCambridge talk (presented by Sebastien) that goes beyond the domains of physics and language, and into the domain of philosopy:
So what else is Sebastien up to these days?
According to the Boston Business Journal OtoSense on it’s way to raising $1.45 million dollars, in order to “hire a local team in Cambridge, [and] expand to Asia and product development.” Boston Business Journal also reports:
Orange (NYSE: ORAN), a European company whose 2013 revenues were about $53 billion, plans to release a home surveillance system later this year with OtoSense’s sound-recognition technology integrated into the system’s sensors that monitor the house and communicate with a mobile app.
We’re starting to get the idea. OtoSense is really good at sound recognition technology. Given their fundraising success, collaborations, and growing team, we can only expect the technology to mature and become more effective. We’re pretty excited about where this is all going. It won’t be long before Google or Apple swoops in to integrate Sebastien’s technology into next-generation sound recognition systems for Artificial Intelligence computing. Fun speculation aside, we hope that OtoSense’s continued growth will lead to further innovations for the hard-of-hearing community.
Here’s a quick rundown of other news from OtoSense.
OtoSense is Selected to Present at MIT Enterprise Forum
Sebastien Christian … will present at the MIT Enterprise Forum’s Launch Smart Clinic Featuring Companies Solving Large Problems
OtoSense is Nominated for Boston’s Best Tech Startup in First Annual Timmy Awards
Tech In Motion presents First Annual Timmy Awards, celebrating Boston’s best technology start ups.
OtoSense is Nominated for Best Mobile App for Accessibility & Inclusion by Mobile World Congress
John Cleese will host the Global Mobile Awards ceremony on Tuesday, 3rd March at the GSMA Mobile World Congress in Barcelona
OtoSense Begins Work with Major European Car Manufacturer
OtoSense … is now doing work with a major European car manufacturer … [to] co-develop a sound recognition technology package
Last modified: March 16, 2015