Our new Disruption by Blockchain series aims to highlight companies that are leveraging the incredible potential of blockchain technology to disrupt and revolutionize their industry. Through one on one interviews, we'll speak directly with industry leaders to cut beyond the hype and get directly to the heart of practical use cases and examples of how it will change the world, one industry at a time.
The following is an interview we recently had with Anton Gerasymenko, CEO of Anryze.
1. What’s the history of Anryze? How and where did you begin?
AG: Late one night in New York, me and my cofounder Mike were sitting in our empty office on 17th Street and looking over our P&L flow. As a call tracking and analysis service, Anryze was doing pretty well for a three month-old company. We had landed two enterprise clients and had eight more in the pipeline. We were growing naturally. And yet there was something concerning about that P&L Excel document.
That something was the huge expense for speech recognition services from Google and IBM. Since we were providing our own service for free as a trial for first two months and our clients’ needs for speech recognition were expanding rapidly, our costs were getting kind of scary.
Please note that we’re not criticising these big corporations, which have created incredible technologies. It’s just that at the time we thought — should things really be like this? Should we and other companies be dependent on the two or three global players that currently provide speech recognition services?
For us, the answer was obvious. We did not want that. So we came up with an ambitious idea to change the situation.
2. Who are the founders and key team members?
Anton Gera, CEO and Founder
Mike Ezhov, CMO and Founder
Oleg Zaychuk, Dev-Ops, System Architect
Valentine Chernushevic, Blockchain Developer
Max Kudymets, Project Manager
Alex Pogrebenniy, Back-End Developer
Angelina Shynkarenko, Pr & Community
Ksenia Leschenko, Front-End Developer
Alexey Kuznetsov, Efficiency Manager
3. What problem are you solving? Who are you solving it for?
AG: Speech recognition systems have been a significant step forward in promoting automation and improving productivity. They have numerous various benefits and uses. The most important being for businesses. Incorporating a speech recognition system into your infrastructure allows a company to not only improve its operations but interactions with its customer base as well, alongside cutting down costs and improving efficiency. So, the question arises, what is hindering small and large businesses alike from making use of this wondrous application of computer technology?
A significant concern when moving to such a system is the machine’s ability to recognizing human speech. A machine is still only a machine, and we have not yet reached that level of advancement in the technologies we use every day for them to be flawless. Therefore, there is a considerable risk of misinterpretation. Speech recognition systems from the likes of Microsoft, Google, and IBM, do their job well, but not well enough. They are also costly solutions for businesses lacking in resources. So, to make a choice which is a drain on your budget for a speech recognition system that is lacking in accuracy is what drives businesses away from doing so.
4. What is your solution to this problem?
AG: We have been working with speech recognition systems for the past 4 years and have learned about everything there is on the market. Our own speech recognition engine was built after taking into account all of the existing technologies and the various problems associated with them. Thanks to this experience we have been able to create a system based on new and distinct principles for recognising human speech. The biggest challenges, though, involved working out how to reduce costs for future clients and how to make it self-educating and self-supporting.
What is Anryze?
Anryze Distributed Network is a peer-to-peer distributed computing network for speech recognition and neural network education that will allow users to transcribe audio files without relying on a third-party provider like Google or Amazon. The removal of central control will mitigate most traditional data failures and provide maximum accuracy for speech transcription due to the neural network’s education through the distributed system.
Anryze Distributed Network is the world’s first decentralised speech recognition platform. It not only provides better quality transcription at a lower cost, but also offers compensation to those who provide CPU power — the participants of our Distributed Network. Anyone can rent out computing power to the network and get paid with crypto tokens.
Anryze uses the blockchain to distribute profits. 70% of income from every transaction goes to miners (CPU providers), 20% to investors (token holders), and the remaining 10% is the company’s fee. Thanks to the blockchain, all transactions are transparent and automatic.
5. Why is your industry ripe for disruption?
AG: The idea of decentralisation was on our radar from the very beginning, but at the time it was impossible. Now, with the rise of blockchain technologies and cryptocurrency mining, all the necessary conditions finally exist.
6. What’s the future of your industry?
AG: As soon as we educate computers to understand natural human language, it will bring about a revolution in many different areas of work and life. Developing, educating, and creating new neural network models is vitally important today, due to the possibility of making computers actually think like a human being. Accurate speech recognition is the very first step towards this. After all, this is how we communicate. Our mission is, therefore, to create the best Speech Recognition System: highly educated, thinking like us, understanding our vocabulary and even intentions. We want as many people as possible to participate in this vision. Afterwards, we will be proud to say that this was a collaborative act that was possible not only through the efforts of a small group of scientists, but with the contribution of many ordinary people.