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Babak Hodjat is a Co-founder and the Chief Executive Officer of Sentient. A serial entrepreneur, Babak has started numerous Silicon Valley companies as main inventor and technologist.

Prior to co-founding Sentient, he was senior director of engineering at Sybase iAnywhere, where he led mobile solutions engineering. Babak was also a co-founder, CTO and board member of Dejima Inc., which was acquired by Sybase in April 2004. He is the primary inventor of Dejima’s patented, agent-oriented technology applied to intelligent interfaces for mobile and enterprise computing – the technology behind Apple’s Siri.
Babak is a published scholar in various fields, including Artificial Life, Agent-Oriented Software Engineering, and Distributed Artificial Intelligence. He has 31 granted or pending patents to his name and holds a PhD in Machine Intelligence from Kyushu University, in Fukuoka, Japan.

#newleadership | chatbots & voice-enabled AI: will brands sink or swim in this new wave of disruption?

Sympathetic but unflappable, always there and never tired, chatbots are already starting to change the way companies interact with their customers. But this is only the tip of the iceberg. As the technology develops, chatbots, whether text-based or voice-enabled, are set to revolutionize communication across almost all industries. From reservations support and personalized shopping recommendations to customer service and feedback channels, the chatbots are coming. Now, it's all about how brands leverage this powerful new tool, to strike the balance between efficiency and service while maintaining and even strengthening brand identity. Plus, where do the boundaries lie: Which tasks will always require a human touch, and which can be outsourced to AI?

Watch Babak Hodjat, Co-founder & CEO of Sentient Technologies, Rob High, IBM Fellow, Vice President & CTO of IBM Watson and Kal Mos, Vice President of AI & Digital Vehicle Mercedes-Benz R&D North America at Daimler AG, in a panel on this new wave of disruption.

Disclaimer: The views of me Convention speakers do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW and Mercedes-Benz.