How This Desi Chatbot Could Help Handloom Weavers in India!


Referred to as the 'desi AI who never stops talking,' Ruuh was built entirely by the Microsoft Research team in India. Launched nine months ago, this chatbot has already had a whopping 17 million conversations.

You may be familiar with Microsoft’s Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based chatbot ‘Ruuh’ that made rounds on social media with leading stand up comedians like Mallika Dua and José Covaco promoting it.

Referred to as the ‘desi AI who never stops talking,’ Ruuh was built entirely by the Microsoft Research team in India. Launched nine months ago, this chatbot has already had a whopping 17 million conversations.

But did you know, this very chatbot by the IT giant has the power to change the lives of handloom weavers in India?

Representational Image only. Source: Pixabay

Well, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, addressing a conclave on Tuesday, invited Puneet Agarwal, who’s worked on Ruuh to explain the chat bot’s working.

“Whether you have an exam, or stuck in some work, Ruuh – just like a friend will always be there with you,” Puneet was quoted in an India Today report.

Ruuh is helping various organisations and individuals including the government, people, and businesses come together on one platform.

The chat bot’s power to contribute to help the handloom industry and weavers is particularly interesting.

Puneet highlighted how most Indian weavers have access to limited designs. And how this very drawback can be tackled if weavers start interacting with Ruuh.

“We are creating a system where instead of creating select designs, Ruuh creates customizable designs which create thousands of designs, giving weavers more and more options to choose from.”

Nadella applauded the innovation in a LinkedIn in a post titled ‘The people and projects that inspired me in 2017’ on Thursday.

“What’s incredible is that the team discovered how ‘Ruuh’ can help handloom weavers in rural communities create new economic opportunity by generating design patterns, inputting pictures and colours with the help of neural networks,” Nadella wrote reported The News Minute.

These neural networks help each user get the best response according to their own unique input. Since the chatbot is powered by deep learning and the ability to understand emotions, it comes with the ability to hold relevant conversations about any topic with best relevant responses.

Read more: 83 Homes and Counting: Retired Teacher Gifts the Homeless What They Need Most

Nadella is confident that weavers will now be able “to grow their markets and generate more revenue, helping preserve this ancient art form and carry on a family business that spans generations”.

“We are In the midst of an amazing change….No computer experience is going to be bound to a single computing device,” he said.

Chat with Ruuh here. And don’t forget to use the hashtag #RuuhWeave to start looking at designs.

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