by Anita Santa-Coloma on April 25, 2018

Why Now, Why VOICE?


Why Now

According to a report from Technavio, the voice recognition market will be a $601 million industry by 2019. Already, there are over one billion voice searches per month.

VoiceFirst is transforming how the world consumes information and fundamentally redefining the way we communicate. Early adopters--developers, agencies, innovators and brands--have an exciting and unprecedented opportunity to acquire real estate in this rising trend.


Contrary to popular belief, voice technology was not introduced through the introduction of Amazon’s Alexa,
but instead in the early 1960’s. The release of IBM’s Shoebox device - although groundbreaking at the time, was quite primitive and only had the capacity to understand 16 words and 19 digits. Crazy, right? Look how far we’ve come, thanks to natural language processing, machine learning, deep learning and far more advanced design that allows computers to receive and interpret dictation and/or carry out spoken commands.

 

Why VOICE

Our world is moving into a more accessible direction (thank goodness), and voice technology is supporting this in a huge way. Although a lot of headlines include the novelty applications that involve smart home examples such as turning on your A/C or controlling the light settings through voice commands, that doesn’t fully encompass the tremendous power that voice technology holds. This technology can allow a person to speak when they’ve lost the ability to, serve as a companion/assistant for seniors or even allow individuals with disabilities to execute tasks with little inconvenience.


Of course, the technology itself is not perfect yet, but give it some time - the amazing engineers, developers and designers behind this tech are certainly working on it. And trust us...they’re pretty much geniuses.



And because we truly admire all of the advances that have been brought to us by the talent behind companies such as Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, IBM, Samsung, Google and more - we're committed to helping the VoiceFirst community grow. We're driven to give all voice participants a platform where they can express themselves, a place to learn and opportunities to connect with others who share their passion for voice technology. 


At Modev, we focus on organizing and nurturing communities where there is a need to bring the right people and technologies together to advance as individuals, organizations and industry. We measure ourselves based on the experiences we enable and whether or not the people we impact improve through our actions. With this in mind, our effort to bring the #VoiceFirst community together for a 3-day summit seemed like a natural fit - and seriously, we love it.
 


Our "why" is simple: we believe human connection is vital in the era of digital transformation. Ultimately, this is why we're thrilled to be leading the charge of gathering 1500+ professionals at the forefront of natural language processing to downtown Newark in July. However, for our team, it's not as simple as selling out a conference, but also connecting a diverse community of individuals from a variety of backgrounds and experiences. We want to draw in the RIGHT individuals: those with a shared passion to contribute to community, a common respect for fellow professionals and the desire to continue advancing for a #VoiceFirst world.

 

Why Newark 

After a nationwide search, we decided to bring this event to the tri-state for a number of reasons.


As a growing community impacted by technology, Newark is also home to some of the leading brands today (and some you'll see at the conference).

  • Audible
  • Prudential
  • Panasonic
  • Mars Wrigley

 

The New Jersey Institute of Technology is the grooming place to some of the world’s top talent including Dave Isbitski, Amazon’s Chief Technical Evangelist and one of our keynotes who will be returning to speak at his alma mater (and home for VOICE).


Newark is a city increasingly recognized as a tech epicenter, with
recent announcements about their smart city initiatives through LinkNWK, Amazon HQ2 candidacy and events such as VOICE and MetroLab.


All in all, it is humbling to have the support of such an amazing city (and Mayor Ras Baraka) who have invested themselves into building Newark up to national recognition.

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