From UMD Halls to AI’s Space: Sung Hyun Noh and ‘Sociable AI’

Noh is forging a new path as the Founder of ‘Sociable AI,’ an AI marketing tool enhancing brand communication
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In the heart of the University of Maryland's Immersive Media Design program, one might spot Emerging Creatives undergrad Sung Hyun Noh engrossed in a degree program that brings together both the creative side of the arts and also the introductory elements of computer science. However, beyond his textbooks, Noh, accompanied by a committed team, is trailblazing a new path in the tech world as the Founder of Sociable AI, a conversational AI marketing platform designed to elevate brand communication.

Sociable AI offers a cutting-edge conversational AI marketing solution for brands. The user- friendly web app empowers brands struggling with social media engagement such as messages and comments, streamlining the creation, testing and deployment of conversational AI. This innovative approach not only automates social media engagement but also bolsters brand loyalty

Finding a Path in AI

Though Noh always felt that computer science was the place he could express his creativity and problem-solving skills, his foray into AI was unscripted. Initially attracted to computer science for its problem-solving allure, his undergraduate years deepened his fascination. His experiences at UMD allowed him to witness firsthand the explosive growth of AI and its transformative potential.

“I actually didn’t come from a strong AI background,” Noh said. “But through friends involved early in the generative AI phenomenon, I got a glimpse into that world. Once immersed, I dedicated myself to understanding it, navigating even the less user-friendly versions of generative AI, and I found it fascinating.”

UMD's Influence

The University of Maryland became more than just a backdrop to his academic pursuits; it was the crucible where his entrepreneurial spirit was nurtured. Resources like the institution's incubator programs, networking events and mentorships equipped Noh with the skills and insights essential to navigate the startup ecosystem. 

"Taking the plunge into a startup for the first time, especially if you're not a serial entrepreneur, is undeniably daunting, but UMD makes it a smooth transition," Noh shared. "There are great resources out there, like those from Y Combinator, that offer insights on do's and don'ts for startups. But for me, UMD's expansive network has been indispensable. It's provided connections to individuals who've been in the trenches, offering me both perspective and guidance whenever I've faced challenges."

The Birth of Sociable AI

The journey of envisioning and actualizing Sociable AI, however, wasn’t just about the end product. For Noh, it became a transformative process. Every line of code written, every prototype tested, and every feedback session held shaped him as a thinker, innovator and individual. Overcoming technical challenges and navigating the volatile startup waters required a combination of resilience, adaptability and unwavering commitment to his vision.

"Balancing academics with starting a company is a significant sacrifice; it's incredibly draining," Noh stated. "It's crucial to understand your 'why'. Through this journey, I've faced daily challenges and, in the process, learned immensely. Therefore, when driven by purpose, such sacrifices become stepping stones to your goal.”

Charting the Future

Looking to the horizon, Noh’s ambitions for Sociable AI are clear. He envisions the platform becoming an indispensable asset for brands, empowering them to foster deeper connections and more meaningful engagements with their audiences. Within five years, he aims to position Sociable AI as the gold standard in conversational marketing, with a presence that stretches across industries and borders.

"There's an expectation for businesses to leverage AI for growth, but many struggle to understand its integration," Noh said. "Platforms like Sociable AI bridge this gap, enabling even those unfamiliar with AI to seamlessly adopt it into their daily practices. We aspire to be akin to companies like Shopify and MailChimp, which empower businesses with technology, making it more accessible and efficient."

For those tracing the trajectory of innovative startups in the AI space, Sung Hyun Noh and Sociable AI are names to watch. And as his journey from the University of Maryland's classrooms to the entrepreneurial stage continues, it’s evident that this is merely the prelude for Noh and his innovative platform.

 —Story by Samuel Malede Zewdu, CS Communications 


Sung Hyun Noh is pursuing his undergraduate studies in the Immersive Media Design program at the University of Maryland. This program, spanning four years, offers a cross-disciplinary approach, equipping students with skills in digital creativity and innovation through modern immersive media resources and techniques. Depending on their preference for technical or aesthetic facets of immersive media, students can opt for a Bachelor of Arts in Emerging Creatives or a Bachelor of Science in Computing.

Other Sociable AI team members also include alums and current students at UMD: 

- Erik Chou (B.S. ’24, computer science)

- Katherine-Aria Close (B.S. ’23, graphic design)

- Jiheon Kim (B.S. ’23, computer science)

- Gabriel Mafra (B.S. ’20, architecture)

- Nikita Shavirin (B.S. ’23, computer science)

- An Tran (B.S. ’25, computer science)     


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