Tomorrow. African Innovation Foundation will be hosting the ‘2017 Innovation Prize for Africa’ in Accra, and today we’d like to recognise one of the nominees – Omolabake Adenle.
Some of the most creative and smart minds of Africa will be attending the event, as we learn more about the innovations established by the nominees. From nine African countries, nine were shortlisted, some being DRC, Liberia, Egypt, Morocco, Uganda, Kenya, Zaimbabwe, South Africa and Nigeria. The innovator we’d like to tell you more about, Adenle, is from Nigeria and has established an intriguing software that solve a key issue in Africa – language.
Omolabake Adenle has built a software that can speak and understand African laguages!
Founded under her startup, AJA.LA Studios, Adenle’s software can understand and digitize African languages; and synthesize speech from African languages presented as digitized text. The software is a brilliant solution which will contribute to the technological advancements of Africa as we will soon be able to interact with a wide range of devices, software applications, and digital services, which were originally available in English, in our own African languages!
Due to voice recognition and speech synthesis being developed in mainly Western and Asian languages, Africa has limited commercial application, academic research and ethnic data capturing for African language speaking consumers and/or citizens across Africa. Because of this reason, digitising African languages will bring about various opportunities for both Africans and every other individual abroad who’s usually affected by language barriers when interacting with Africans in their local language.
This innovation opens up opportunities for Africans with low literacy levels to also enjoy the benefits of the digital revolution. In turn this assist with overall developments across Africa such as education, skills development, job creations, employment and every other aspect under the sun that was previously disadvantaged by language barriers.
We are ecstatic about such innovative developments and the ripple effects due from such innovation. Hopefully, we will be able to use Siri in our own preferred local languages! Watch this space.
We’d also like to wish all the nominees good luck for tomorrow’s ‘2017 Innovation Prize for Africa’.