A Seattle-based tech startup, Fixie, recently launched an innovative AI-powered web experience named HiSanta.ai. This unique platform allows users to engage in real-time voice conversations with a variety of festive characters including Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, and Rudolph. The experience is designed to be interactive, with characters responding quickly to questions and engaging in conversations about holiday wishes and more. Santa, for example, converses with a British accent.

HiSanta.ai exemplifies Fixie’s cutting-edge technology that integrates large language models into software applications. This particular project showcases the seamless integration of speech-to-text, language models like OpenAI’s ChatGPT-3, and text-to-speech technologies, all working in harmony for real-time interaction. Matt Welsh, Fixie’s chief architect and co-founder, explains that considerable engineering efforts were invested to ensure the system’s responsiveness and interactive capabilities, especially important when engaging with young users.

In addition to standard characters, HiSanta.ai also offers a choice between ‘nice’ and ‘naughty’ personas, ranging from the traditional Santa and Mrs. Claus to more mischievous versions like Bad Santa and Karen Claus. This diverse range of characters adds a playful dimension to the interactions.

Since its launch, HiSanta.ai has hosted over 10,000 conversations, with users typically engaging for a few minutes, though some conversations have extended beyond half an hour. The platform has been rigorously tested to maintain the festive spirit without veering off into inappropriate territory.

Fixie, co-founded by Matt Welsh, CTO Justin Uberti, CEO Zach Koch, and Chief AI Officer Hessam Bagherinezhad, raised a $17 million seed round earlier this year. The company is committed to pushing the boundaries of AI technology, enabling the development of sophisticated and reliable AI applications beyond basic demonstrations.