Angelos Italianknows Blog

Monday 13 April 2015

Building a voice actuated IOT controller

Ive been meaning to use one of my RaspberryPIs for something  "cool" recently.. And Ive decided to create myself a raspberry PI version of Siri.... Recently Amazon announced the Amazon Echo. A very nice looking package... However nothing beats homebrew right??

Initial research

Ive discovered three principle voice-control frameworks

  1. Jasper
  2. CMU Sphinx aka PocketSphinx
    and finally
  3. VoiceControl by Steven Hickson


I like Jasper , it appears to be well thought out and appears to have a lot of extensions, compatibility with different voice recognition/ text to speech systems... 
- Documentation is a bit hit-n-miss
- Rather large and not sure why....

CMU Sphinx/PocketSphinx

I recently followed the tutorial by Wolf Paulus on his blog and got it all working. When compiling everything I had to ignore the "make check" step, it works regardless, and after I created some dictionaries then it all worked fine.. Except... I could only get it to detect words Id created using the dictionary approach, I couldnt get it to detect/parse a sentence which wasnt in the vocab list.. 
I kept getting "input overrun, read calls are too rare (non-fatal)".. From my googling at 2am I think this is because the PI has run out of steam.. Wolf appears to be using a PI v2 so I think Im gonna need to upgrade..... 


Havent tried this one yet.. will do and let you know

Sunday 12 April 2015

Getting Text to Voice from Google

I'm currently goofing around trying to get some voice recognition working on my Raspberry-PI and whilst trying to get  some Text to Speech working I stumbled across this little script which uses Google Translate to do the business. Very cute so i thought Id share!

Create a shell Script (e.g. and type these commands in

say() { local IFS=+;/usr/bin/mplayer -ao alsa -really-quiet -noconsolecontrols "$*"; }
say $*
Short, Sharp and Sweet...