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I read but I don't speak

This is our entry for the TADHack-mini Phoenix with Avaya ENGAGE, that took place between Feb 1 and Feb 2, 2020 for more information on the Hackathon please check

The problem

When non-natives try to learn a second language, one of the biggest barriers for it is shyness and self-conciousness and it is very common to hear, when talking about a second language that "I can read it, but I don't speak it", or in spanish "Lo entiendo pero no lo hablo".

This hack tries to address this by creating an engaging way to learn english for non-natives. It attempts to reduce the self consciousness by providing an automated way of grading, and by using the phone.

The Hack

We created a game that uses artificial intelligence to help improve the pronunciation of non-native speakers using the phone. There is a voice app that you can call at +1 916 860 1204. The app will ask you to repeat a given phrase and check how well you did it. Your score will be saved on a database and you will be able to see how it improves over time. The results are avaiable on

The team

This hack is collaboration effort between two companies, based in Bogotá, Colombia (South America). The team mebers are:

  • Marco Castro [Infotrans]: The one with the idea of participating on the hackathon, he is the one that got the people together, and is the one that represent the team on-site at Phoenix.

  • Carlos Daza [Infotrans]: He created the gameification component and the website that can be accessed at

  • Marlon Acosta [Ingenian]: He is the zang wizard, he created the call flow and the messages that appear on the phone call.

  • Juan Pablo Morales [Ingenian]: He created the services that the Zang callflow uses, wrote the data to a database and invoked IBM's Watson to read the audio saved by zang to test the accuracy of what is being said

Sponsor's resources

The whole voice flow is made using the resources provided by Avaya and available at This means the phone number used, and the voice routing and the voice recording are provided by Avaya.

Other willing and unwilling sponsors

Here is a shoutout to the resources that made this hack possible:

Prize category

This hack is a contestant in the education category

Where the goods are



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