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News 25 Jan 16

Young Bosnian Woos Facebook With IT Breakthrough

Haris Ascalic, a 20-year-old from Visoko, has invented a digital assistant software called Cadence - which he hopes will interest the likes of Facebook.

Rodolfo Toe
BIRN
Sarajevo
Cadence official launch trailer

A young IT programmer from Visoko, a town 20 km north of Sarajevo, has developed an innovative digital assistant that is winning growing popularity at home, and which he hopes to sell to the giants in the social media world.

Cadence is a software that interacts with its owner, explains its 20-year-old creator, Haris Ascalic.

"Cadence can talk with the user, can ask questions and can remember the answers and preferences," he explained.

"She can also send emails, SMS, play music, movies, and read top stories from websites. She learns in time about herself and the user. She's unique", Haris told BIRN.

"My idea was to make her become your own virtual best friend," he added.

So far, Cadence is only available as a beta version, so the software works only on Windows OS.

It reads, writes, and speaks in English, but can understand Bosnian too, Haris pointed out.

Haris, who works as a freelance programmer, is trying to sell his invention to IT companies like Microsoft and Facebook.

"I contacted Mark Zuckenberg [CEO of Facebook] and got a reply by the Facebook team, which told me that my project is currently under review," he explained.

Cadence with her developer Haris Ascalic | Photo: Haris Ascalic

In the past weeks, Cadence has been welcomed by media experts in Bosnia and the region. Some are even hailing its ytoung creator as a Bosnian IT wunderkind.

"I learnt how to program on the internet when I was at the primary school," Haris recalled, adding that unfortunately IT technology in Bosnia is not developed as it is in other countries.

Haris is now looking for people wishing to cooperate with him to improve and further develop Cadence.

"It's a worldwide project and I hope that in future it will be installed on numerous devices, like televisions, tablets and smartphones," he said.

"Lately, people have started talking about Cadence in English and German newspapers. TV and radio stations are talking about it. I'm so thankful to all these people for the support they are showing," Haris concluded.

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