DIY your own AI assistant

The options available to consume voice activated assistants are increasing with recent releases into the market.

The availability of pre-built, off the shelf Assistants is growing and so is the ability to build your own, using the open sourced versions.

Google recently gave away AIY, (Do It Yourself Artificial Intelligence) a maker kit with Voice Hat and components to work with a Raspberry PI, on the front of the Raspberry PI Magazine issue 57 .

The demand for this kit was very high and as a result unfortunately there are none left and not much information at the moment of the kit becoming available for sale. There is a waiting list available and it will probably be released depending upon demand.

This aside, whilst we await the release of the sale kit for AIY, you can still take advantage of the AIY capabilities and a Raspberry Pi 3 in a similar way by installing Amazon Alexa onto the PI. To get started, just Google ‘AIY Build’. As far as materials, you’ll need:

  • To Google AIY Build
  • A Raspberry Pi 3
  • A Generic Aux Speaker
  • A USB Microphone

You could go one better by running both Alexa and Google AIY on the same Raspberry PI, using a build from xtools called AssistantPi.

AssistantPi is basically a tweak of AlexaPi. It includes the Google Assistant SDK and uses AlexaPi’s hotword recognition to activate either Assistant or Alexa. The installer provides an easy way to get everything set up in just under an hour.

A great project to try out and learn from, giving you the power of both Alexa and Google.

This entry was originally posted in Max’s blog.


Max Hemingway — Senior Architect

Max is a senior architect for DXC in the United Kingdom. With more than 25 years of experience, he has a broad and deep range of technical knowledge and is able to translate business needs into IT-based solutions. Currently the chief architect of the BAE Systems account in the UK, Max has a proven track record acquired through continual client engagement and delivery of leading edge infrastructures, all of which have delivered positive results for end-clients, including IT cost reduction, expansion of service capability and increased revenues.

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