IN2 simplifies the creation of time-coded metadata, chapters, topics and keywords from video content

How was the idea behind your startup born? Present your team and let our readers know how you all came together.

IN2 started with the aim to simplify the way people collect, manage and present multimedia content, primarily photos and videos. 

We started the company offering new ways to browse large amounts of photos by using tools like visual similarity, colour search and search by sketch. Building upon this and the initial very positive response, we succeeded to develop a complete and  comprehensive multimedia management, processing and publishing platform that integrates the best of AI tools to extract metadata from audio, image and video files. 

Pretty much at the start of the company, I met Alex with whom we shaped the vision of the company, and co-created many of the web solutions we are now offering. Meeting him was not only inspiring but, now after all these years of trust and cooperation I should say that it was a kind of winning six in the lottery. Alex brings at the same time calm, enthusiasm and energy for new paths. 

George Ioannidis – Director

Can you please present your solution? What makes your solution stand out from the rest? 

In the European Data Incubator we developed Vide, a solution to simplify the creation of time-coded metadata, chapters, topics and keywords from video content. Vide takes advantage of the best of AI and years of experience in the field to unlock the treasures from multimedia assets and let content be king again. It provides a simple API to help developers build on top and integrate it into content processing workflows and gets things done 4x faster than the video duration. Using recomposable processing blocks Vide can solve a variety of video detection and segmentation problems. Automated pipelines, on-demand scaling both on-premises and on the cloud together with seamless integration in existing infrastructure is what makes Vide stand out. 

Vide is leading the way metadata is creating new business and adds value to the bottom line. If you want to know what you have in the archive, provide your end-users an advanced search, build-up content-based recommendations and improve your users’ experience, Vide is your tool of choice.

Which Data Provider do you collaborate with and how has your experience been? What made you choose them and their challenge? 

The Vide platform has been developed in the course of our participation in the European Data Incubator acceleration programme tackling the VRT challenge of Automatic Chapter Detection. It was a perfect match from the day we saw the challenges listed in the European Data Incubator website. Having previously worked in the area of extracting chapters from news, we had already a very specific idea how we can build-up on our existing work and deliver the promised results. The collaboration with VRT was superb. The team at VRT was always very responsive and helpful in every aspect of our journey in EDI. I appreciated meeting everyone and I am sure that we’ll work together again in the future.

You have come a long way since the start of the EDI incubation programme. Can you tell us more about the evolution/traction of your solution, company and team during the programme?

Starting with the Explore phase that culminated in the Datathon, we were able to have a first look at the data, test and refine our initial ideas and concept and build a demo. In the Experiment phase, we worked hard towards delivering a minimum viable product and now are looking into partnership and piloting opportunities. There were major leaps not only on the technical side and the maturity of the solution, but also on a deeper understanding of the product itself, the company and our value proposition. During the EDI incubation programme, we were also able to expand the company team with an additional member and invest more resources in sales and marketing. 

What challenges did you face and what lessons did you learn? 

One of the challenges we faced was to get clear what the main features of the solution we were building would be, starting from defining the minimum viable product. With the support though of our data provider VRT and our mentor, we settled on a primarily backend solution that can be used with a simple API interface everywhere is needed. Time was flying too and especially in the Experiment phase where we actually had to build Vide, it came very handy to expand the team and get an additional software developer on board. 

One of lessons learnt here was not to be shy asking for help and advice and be open to really putting different opinions on the table and learn from other viewpoints. Especially the one-to-one coaching sessions helped us a lot and beyond the actual solution we have been building in EDI. There is always something to learn, even if you think you already know it.

What impact has your solution achieved/ you are planning for it to achieve?

Already in November 2020 we saw the first positive results of our sales and marketing efforts by starting a project related to AI in education. Additionally, as we intensified commercial activities in the company, we were able to secure high value contracts and start two new projects in the first quarter of 2021. At this stage we are seeking partnerships with vendors active in technology and broadcasting and carrying out pilot activities with new content and data providers.

According to your experience, what is the secret behind a successful data driven startup? 

Successful data-driven companies need to master the tools to crunch, process and transform data while offering at the same time tangible outcomes (for example automation support) to their clients. The current state of the art in AI is not (yet) a silver bullet for all problems and sometimes I get the impression that many companies use technology as a big hammer.

Working in AI for more than 20 years, I  experienced a couple of AI cycles turning the initial excitement to disappointment when the promised outcomes failed to meet the expectations. We live now in one of the most rapidly changing and exciting times and with the abundance of available data a lot can be done but be careful what you promise, it’s better in the long run to under-promise and over-deliver.

In short, my three ingredients for success are master the tools, don’t overestimate what you can deliver and create something of value beyond solely “nice to have”.

What’s next for you? Are you looking for partnerships, a new round of investment, new piloting or something else?

We are now actively looking for partnerships with vendors and solution providers in integration, research and development and for carrying out pilot activities with content and data providers. We started therefore screening our existing company contacts for both partnership opportunities and piloting activities. 

How would you describe your experience with EDI?

The last 6 months were a tremendous push to the company and each of the 3 project phases were exciting in their own terms. We had a really great time, learnt a lot and I would happily attribute a large part of the success of the company to this period. Beyond the opportunity to explore and experiment we also met many very interesting people. My special thanks goes to our mentor, Bartek Białecki from etventure, and the coaches who were always there to help us deliver for the long-term and the after-incubation times. I highly recommend EDI, it helped us to come out with a lot of more confidence in our solution, ourselves and prepared us very well for the many challenges ahead.

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