1. Can you set the stage? How did you first connect with Verizon Ventures and why did you choose Verizon?
We started Q-Sensei to develop indexing technology for an entirely new way of interacting with data. Searching and analyzing an immense amount of data, often from disparate sources, is a laborious pain point for all industries ranging from communications to healthcare. We saw the increasing need to simplify these challenges through new technology that was as powerful as it was slim, agile, and quick to deploy. In order to really drive this next phase of search and analytics, we wanted to work with a strategic partner that understands the industry’s needs and supports our vision to initiate a major, long-term shift in the industry. Verizon Ventures fit the bill, and ever since their involvement in our Series A funding back in 2012, Q-Sensei has been utilizing their breadth and understanding of use cases, resources and expertise to build out our flagship product Fuse. Fuse is an API-driven platform providing analytical index technology that can easily integrate into existing tools to enable search, analysis, enrichment, extraction, break-through of user interfaces and alike.
2. Q-Sensei recently released Fuse 1.1, how is this new document service shaking out?
We’ve always had a long-term vision to make working with data extremely easy. With this being our main area of expertise, we’ve taken document search to a whole new level incorporating data types ranging from office files to websites or logs. When we make data available for search and analysis, we do this by combining structured and unstructured data. We’ve significantly enhanced discovery by offering a contextual and user-centric “auto-suggest” functionality along with dynamic filters that can recommend related items (e.g. similar contracts, patents or experts). In Fuse 1.1, we published a substantial upgrade to our platform in terms of speed and ease of use, bolstering our indexing technology by making it even more flexible to process data. Not only does this ensure faster data consumption, but it also helps our users better monetize all of their valuable data assets. Our developers also dedicated time to build out sophistication in our testing, integration, and release processes. It’s very rewarding to finally have this accessible along with our updated documentation, which is now as agile as our development process.
3. Given the growing volume of both structured and unstructured data from a variety of sources, how important is a unified dashboard for finding and visualizing critical business data?
In today’s world, where so much is dependent on speed to market or speed to consumer, we think that providing a unified system for all search and analytics needs makes businesses a lot more successful. Whether that means summarizing critical streams of data in a unified, visualized dashboard or providing powerful discovery mechanisms when searching data using a unified access point, we feel it is important to do everything on one powerful platform that supports different search and discovery strategies. In Fuse, we keep adding great features for powerful search and analysis – e.g. we just released added lemmatization which allows you to search for one form of a word and receive all forms of that word back in your results. We anticipate more great search and analysis features to come in our next releases.
4. In your experience, what's the best way to work with an investor like Verizon Ventures?
Verizon has been a strong partner for us from day 1 and it’s been a collaborative process throughout. They invited us to showcase our interactive dashboard at Verizon’s Innovation Centers in San Francisco and Waltham, demonstrating Q-Sensei’s indexing capabilities with Twitter streams of Fortune 1,000 companies. Featuring our technology at these centers is an opportunity for us to be involved in Verizon’s ecosystem and showcase our visionary idea and commercial solution to visitors of the centers.
5. What's next for Q-Sensei in 2015?
2015 has already been an exciting year. We are thrilled to see how our customers are using Fuse for use cases ranging from document search to log-file analysis. This encourages us to broaden the scope of our platform and we have scheduled two more major product releases for the remainder of the year.