This past summer, I interned at Microsoft through their Garage Internship Program.

There, I teamed up with five amazing interns to create and beta-release, Hearing AI. From a basic concept to a full-fledged iOS app, we collaborated as a team to both develop and validate the idea. Using Microsoft’s latest tools and technology, we created a new and unique experience to challenge the question of “why must sound only be heard?”.

Hearing AI was designed for the deaf and hard of hearing as visual experience to depict the ambience and feel of the sound environment. Through visualizations, one can get a sense of how the environment feels and gather information that is easily missed.

As well, Hearing AI taps into Microsoft Translator’s real-time speech-to-text API to contextualize speech. With speech, the app detects and visualizes the intensity of spoken words to create a more dynamic and impactful experience.

Over the course of a summer, I learned a whole lot about how difficult processing sound is, coordinating and self-managing a team, creating an iOS app and validating it with user testing, and the importance of complying to privacy and securities policies early on.

To say the least, it was an amazing summer at Microsoft Vancouver.