- Microsoft Cloud AI Research Challenge 2018


Suresh Sivasankaran / June 18, 2018

3 min read

What was the Microsoft Cloud AI Research Challenge?

The Cloud AI Research Challenge invited any researcher—from students to academics to employees of public and private organizations—to build AI applications on Microsoft AI services, using at least one of Microsoft’s AI-supporting services, including Azure Machine Learning, Cognitive Services, Data Science VM, Batch AI, Bot Framework, and others. These services feature the latest advancements in developing for AI on Azure.

CricketBot is an AI based VideoBOT technology for personalized cricket highlights.

Similary, we got invitation from Microsoft for the AI Challenge along with other students and researchers across the world. We were a team of three from California Communitcations, Inc - Ram Chellamuthu, Suresh Sivasankaran and Arjun Ganesan.

How we did it?

Since we were already working on different use cases with our idea of a multi-modal algorithm in California Communications,Inc for extracting metadata from videos, we decided to create a personalized video watching experience for sports videos. Since Cricket is a famous sport in India, we thought of giving it a try.

With, you can interact with the video bot to customize the video watching experience according to your needs.

Like every other hackathon, I participated in, this particular one was a bit challenging as we wanted to develop something innovative which would solve the problem of large scale users as we were competing with the researchers and students from top universities and organizations across the world.

After a long coding session for 30 hours straight, I and my other teammate Arjun Ganesan finished the first version of our VideoBot technology and submitted it to the Microsoft team.

I worked on creating the NLP APIs in the backend and the client-side application UI for supporting the VideoBOT.

PS - Plenty of Coffee ☕ and Redbulls 🥤were finished during the coding session.

Do you know what happened next?

Yes, It was the result day and we were so happy seeing our names on the results page but what made it more exciting was the message from the Microsoft team,

From Microsoft,

We received numerous submissions from around the world, and the judging panel had the challenging task to determine which projects best showed how Microsoft AI services are used to solve a difficult problem and provide insightful solutions. After all, projects were evaluated, the scores were so close among the top six finalists that the judges unanimously decided to create two 4th place awards, each with a prize amount of USD 5000. Congratulations to all the winners!

Please check out for more details about the event and results in official Microsoft’s site.

Video Demo of