Seek lands $7.5M investment for AI that answers domain-specific questions • TechCrunch

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Seek, an automation platform for information analytics duties, at present introduced that it raised $7.5 million throughout pre-seed and seed rounds that had participation from Conviction Companions, Battery Ventures and former Snowflake CEO Bob Muglia. CEO Sarah Nagy says that the funding will likely be put towards rising Search’s workforce into the subsequent 12 months, notably on the engineering and information science facet of the corporate.

“I based Search final 12 months, after working as a quant and information scientist for greater than a decade,” Nagy instructed TechCrunch in an e mail interview. “I wished to resolve a ache level that I skilled time and again all through my profession. I’ve usually discovered myself feeling like a ‘human pc’ to translate between my much less technical colleagues and the information they wanted. For instance, gross sales reps would ship me messages asking me to drag some primary, however customized, statistics for our prospects. It will frustrate me as a result of it might take time away from the analysis that I wished to be doing, that added long-term worth to the enterprise. From my colleagues’ perspective, it was additionally actually annoying to attend a very long time for me to manually get them the information.”

Search’s core product is a pure language interface for information that may plug into current information and communication instruments, together with cloud information warehouses (i.e., analytics databases saved within the public cloud), inside a enterprise. Customers can ask questions of Search they’d usually ask an information workforce throughout apps like Slack, Microsoft Groups and e mail.

Powering Search’s search and cataloging options is a household of AI language fashions skilled on information together with ebooks, on-line articles and web sites in addition to proprietary information. The platform shops each questions and solutions from customers inside a information base, to allow them to be discovered rapidly. On this approach, Search turns into extra “clever” at working with an organization’s information the extra it’s used, in keeping with Nagy.

“What Search is hoping to do for information groups is automate the mundane, handbook work that should be finished by hand because it has traditionally been too sophisticated to automate,” Nagy mentioned. “As a former information scientist who used to do this type of work, I do know that my high quality of life would have improved if these duties had been automated, and the work that I may have finished with the time saved would have produced long-term, basic variations in my firms’ technique and product.”

There’s been tons within the information currently about AI that confidently presents answers that later turn out to be biased or factually untrue. When requested what Search’s doing about it with respect to its personal AI, Nagy mentioned the corporate has a patent pending for a “management stream” to restrict inaccuracies offered to customers.

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“I predict that, because the generative AI hype cycle performs out, extra conversations will likely be had concerning the flaws within the high quality of AI-generated content material, and the way customers can shield themselves from any inaccuracies,” he added. “My hope is that we are going to change into a thought chief relating to educating prospects on learn how to maximize the advantages of generative AI whereas having the best course of in place to deal with its limitations.”

Search falls into the class of enterprise serps generally known as “cognitive search.” Rivals embrace Amazon Kendra and Microsoft SharePoint Syntex, which draw on information bases to cobble collectively solutions to company-specific questions. Startups like Hebbia, Kagi, Andi and additionally leverage AI fashions to return particular content material in response to queries versus easy lists of outcomes.

Regardless of the competitors, nine-employee Search has managed to signal on “household-name” prospects, Nagy claims. He wouldn’t reveal income or title names, save saying that Search’s roughly dozen purchasers — which vary from “startups to the Fortune 100” — come from industries together with business-to-business software program as a service, fintech, direct-to-consumer and client packaged items.

“Generative AI appears to be the exception to the slowdown in tech proper now, and Search has benefited from the explosion in reputation of instruments like ChatGPT,” Muglia mentioned. “[Moreover,] Search was based post-pandemic, and our customers are information employees who can make money working from home. As firms’ digital transformation initiatives accelerated through the pandemic, together with extra organizations adopting bold information initiatives, my speculation for constructing Search strengthened.”

Within the coming months, Nagy says that Search’s focus will likely be on constructing app integrations, making the onboarding course of extra automated and “persevering with to enhance our prospects’ expertise with our platform.”


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