The Importance Of Diversity When It Comes To Building AI-Powered Technology, And How This Avatar-Led iOS App Bolsters Diversity in Digital Representation

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*gramLabs co-founders Matt Provo & Ali Amarsy chat with ITSPmagazine’s Selena Templeton for the Diverse IT podcast about mai (“my AI”), an autonomous persona platform that accurately replicates an individual’s complete likeness. Tune in to hear about the importance of diversity when it comes to building AI-powered technology, how this avatar-led iOS social-networking app bolsters diversity in digital representation especially for people who are consistently under/misrepresented, and how the team at *gramLabs tries to ensure that unconscious human bias doesn’t sneak into the app.

Check out this short video to see how mai works:

If you’re interested in downloading the app, head over to the website.

About the Guests

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Matt Provo is the co-founder and CEO of *gram Labs, an innovative AI startup which leverages deep learning, speech recognition and holographic design to give life to virtual avatars. Matt is an alumnus of Harvard Business school. He is a successful entrepreneur and a highly accomplished product manager, with a strong background in AI and machine learning. He brings 10+ years of experience leading teams and building world-class products at Apple, where he led a team of 75 developers responsible for building and managing the way technology is utilized in Apple Retail stores around the world.

Most recently, he was the co-founder of ParkedIn, a machine-learning concierge service for finding and managing parking in large cities. He is also a co-founder of the social enterprise company Invisible Children, whose film Kony 2012 recorded over 100M YouTube views in just six days. Matt is very thankful to have lived in Uganda to help launch a series of strategic partnerships and humanitarian aid projects that have provided the opportunity for over 10,000 children to go to college on a scholarship.

Proud husband and father of two, the best part of Matt’s week is enjoying Saturday morning breakfast and spending time at the beach with his family.


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Ali Amarsy is the co-founder and CSO of *gram Labs. He attended McGill University and is also a Harvard Business School alum. As a startup that can build autonomous beings powered by deep learning, artificial intelligence and holographic design, the opportunities for *gramLabs to collaborate are huge.

Ali brings a wealth of experience in building brands and experiences that set them apart, so he works hand-in-hand with top marketing & operations leads in Fortune 100 C-Suites to maximize the impact of such cutting-edge technology. Before his venture into tech entrepreneurship, he worked with Leo Burnett, where he worked his way up to the role of Head of Strategy & Effectiveness for Leo’s

Lower Gulf & Kuwait business in just 7 years. He was the youngest person to hold such a role in the region amongst top-tier agencies, while having the largest strategy team across the Middle East. At Leo Burnett Dubai, he led new business efforts across a wide spectrum of categories and oversaw the

strategic output of all Leo Burnett offices in the region. His focus verticals ranged from telco, to quick service restaurants, tobacco and automotive, just to name a few.

He spoke at TEDx Dubai, Step Conference & Lynx MENA, and is very passionate about education in the developing world.