Amazon Engineers Made An App That They Claim Will Translate A Cat’s Meows Into Words

Who else has ever wondered what your cat is trying to convey with their meows? Javier Sanchez, a former Amazon engineer that worked on Alexa, has shared some insight into the possible future of feline communication.

Sanchez now works as a project manager at a tech company called Akvelon, which is located in Bellvue, Washington. As reported by King5, his latest undertaking is that of the app, MeowTalk. When completed, it is supposed to be able to “translate” all the feline vocalizations so that humans can hopefully better understand their cats.

According to PEOPLE, Sanchez explained to the local NBC affiliate that even though cats meow at us, they don’t have a language amongst themselves. As he pointed out, when communicating amongst other cats they don’t share words or meows with one another. It’s just us that they meow at. Therefore, through his team’s research, Sanchez has gathered more insight into feline communications with humans, noting that they have about nine different messages that they’re trying to convey when they meow at you.

Armed with what they’ve learned so far about cats and their meows, Sanchez and his team have been trying to turn them into phrases that express different feline needs like “I’m hungry” or “I’m experiencing pain.” With the app, cat owners would be able to record the different meows and get the sound translated. There will even be the option to fine-tune the app into picking up on the specific vocals of your pet so you can better learn what your cats are trying to say. Cat owners can also provide the app feedback in terms of their accuracy.

As the app’s description states, “Using machine learning MeowTalk instantaneously translates your cat’s meows into one of nine general cat intents; these nine intents represent cat moods and states of mind. But each cat also has its own unique vocalization and vocabulary of meows that goes beyond these nine general intents. You can train the MeowTalk app to learn your cat’s unique vocabulary of meows (cat talk) by telling the app what each meow means when your cat makes it. When you give the app 5 to 10 examples of a specific meow for your cat (e.g. “food”, “let me out”) the app can start to recognize that meow (be your cat translator) when it hears it.”

The MeowTalk app is still under development, and it’s still being refined and updated, however, for those eager to get their hands on the app, you can download the prototype for Apple and Android phones.

Sanchez is hoping that the app will be a success as it could lead to further developments, such as a collar that directly translates what your cat is saying. And that is something we could get behind. What do you think of the MeowTalk app? Let us know!

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Anastasia is an American ex-pat living in Ireland. When she's not writing she can be found wandering the Irish countryside in search of inspiration. You can follow her writing adventures on Twitter @AnastasiaArell5 or Instagram @writeranastasia26
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