Making Email Better With AI At Shortwave


April 21st, 2024

53 mins 43 secs

Your Host

About this Episode


Generative AI has rapidly transformed everything in the technology sector. When Andrew Lee started work on Shortwave he was focused on making email more productive. When AI started gaining adoption he realized that he had even more potential for a transformative experience. In this episode he shares the technical challenges that he and his team have overcome in integrating AI into their product, as well as the benefits and features that it provides to their customers.


  • Hello and welcome to the Data Engineering Podcast, the show about modern data management
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  • Your host is Tobias Macey and today I'm interviewing Andrew Lee about his work on Shortwave, an AI powered email client


  • Introduction
  • How did you get involved in the area of data management?
  • Can you describe what Shortwave is and the story behind it?
    • What is the core problem that you are addressing with Shortwave?
  • Email has been a central part of communication and business productivity for decades now. What are the overall themes that continue to be problematic?
  • What are the strengths that email maintains as a protocol and ecosystem?
  • From a product perspective, what are the data challenges that are posed by email?
  • Can you describe how you have architected the Shortwave platform?
    • How have the design and goals of the product changed since you started it?
    • What are the ways that the advent and evolution of language models have influenced your product roadmap?
  • How do you manage the personalization of the AI functionality in your system for each user/team?
  • For users and teams who are using Shortwave, how does it change their workflow and communication patterns?
  • Can you describe how I would use Shortwave for managing the workflow of evaluating, planning, and promoting my podcast episodes?
  • What are the most interesting, innovative, or unexpected ways that you have seen Shortwave used?
  • What are the most interesting, unexpected, or challenging lessons that you have learned while working on Shortwave?
  • When is Shortwave the wrong choice?
  • What do you have planned for the future of Shortwave?

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Parting Question

  • From your perspective, what is the biggest gap in the tooling or technology for data management today?

Closing Announcements

  • Thank you for listening! Don't forget to check out our other shows. Podcast.__init__ covers the Python language, its community, and the innovative ways it is being used. The Machine Learning Podcast helps you go from idea to production with machine learning.
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The intro and outro music is from The Hug by The Freak Fandango Orchestra / CC BY-SA

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