Voice control

Pondering on how to proceed with voice control on the Smart Mirror project.

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So here’s the plan.  I want the mirror to be totally voice controlled.  Kind or SIRI like, but better preferably.

I’ve been looking around.  There appear to be several solutions.  There is an open source library called “Jasper”.  You can find more information here.

It allows talking to your device, and is “always on”.  It can also talk back using a some standard libraries that can be installed on the pi, but as you can see and hear in the video below, the quality of the voice isn’t all that.

 

It could be an alternative, but I continued my search.

Until I stumbled upon a product called Amazon Echo.  It really cool, totally voice controlled.  It can answer a lot of questions, and unlike siri, it doesn’t answer by sending you a web page, but by saying the result.  Exactly what I want.

Check it out:

The good part : you can access the API using a free toolset called the Alexa Voice Service (AVS).  Alexa is the name of the virtual assistant, like there’s siri or cortana.

You can even extend alexa yourself by adding new “skills”.  I’ve decided to go full on for this solution as it’s free and I already have an amazon developer account.  I’ve used it to publish some android apps to the amazon store before.

Another perk might be that it might one day become available in another language, like Dutch.  That will probably not be the case with alternatives like Jasper.

Here’s another interesting video on it :

 

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