What we learned from our users at a winery offsite in Santa Rosa (and what we've done with those learnings)

Storytell recently did a user offsite at Paradise Ridge winery in Santa Rosa, CA. We built on everything we learned in our San Diego user offsite and our BVI boat trip.

We set up glamping "yurts" to save on costs as an early-stage startup (thank you for your understanding and incredible adventurous attitude, users!) and we spent the weekend going deeper on how users are using our platform -- and how they'd like to be using it.

We learned so much from our users. For example, we learned that our VirtualMe™ approach was backwards -- users don't want to first create a data container and then upload data into it. Instead, users wanted to be able to quickly and dynamically chat with any grouping or slice of knowledge they choose -- so we've sunsetted VirtualMe™ and created SmartChat™.

We learned that data privacy and control really matters to our users. We knew this, but we really understood during the offsite that enterprise data privacy was the #1 blocker that was keeping users from more deeply using our platform. So we built http://Sparkle.ai -- an open-source data sanitization service that Storytell uses to anonymize enterprise data (not just PII but also specific enterprise terms).

These are just two of our big learnings from the weekend -- there were many more, and it's all resulted in a launch of a brand new Storytell dashboard that features SmartChats,™ which we'll be announcing more broadly soon. Here's a preview:

We've also incorporated Visual Story Tiles,™ so you can inspect LLM answers down to the source:

What's most incredible about the speed at which our Storytell Crew is building is how quickly we're going from "user has feedback" to "shipped to production." For example, our Crew built Sparkle.ai in just 2 days and executed on SmartChat™ in just over two weeks:

🙏 Thank you, users -- what a great offsite and opportunity to learn from you. Can't wait to continue building Storytell with you.

Here are a few additional pictures from the offsite:

Looking forward to getting together with you again this fall!