What do you get when you put a device connected to the Internet on top of another? Slightly more control than you would otherwise would be Alias, the "learnable parasite" – an intelligent loudspeaker topper from the IoT project, produced by two designers, Bjørn Karmann and Tore Knudsen.
The Raspberry Pi powered mushroom blob mission is to whisper sweet nonsense in Amazon Alexas (or Google Home) so that it does not accidentally snoop at your home.
Alias by Bjørn Karmann on Vimeo.
Alias only stops making noise in the host's speakers when it hears its own wake-up command ̵
The mid-range IoT device has its own local neural network, allowing the owner to be baptized with a name (or sound) of their choice via a training interface in a companion app.
The TensorFlow open source library was used to create the name training component.
Instead of saying "Alexa" or "Alexa" "Ok Google" to talk to a co A commercial, intelligent speaker – and to parry a big tech brand name in his own home, and not to mention Saddling with a device that is always prone to vocal jokes (and worse, accidental eavesdropping) – lets you control what the Wake Word is. This takes some control over a privacy-oriented technology.
This means that you can rename Alexa to "Bezosallseeingeye" or call your Google Home "Carelesswhispers". Whatever your boat is swimming.
When Alias hears its custom wake-up command, the sound stops on the host speaker – allowing the intelligent assistant below to hear commands and respond to them normally.
"We looked at how fungi and viruses from Cordyceps can excite and control insects to fulfill their own goals and were inspired to develop their own parasite for smart home systems ", Explain Karmann and Knudsen here in a project report. "That's why we started Project Alias to demonstrate how the Maker culture can be used to redefine our relationship with smart home technologies by giving designers more power to the end users of the products."
Alias provides insight into a rich field of creative individual future for IoT as the means of production for custom but still powerful products for connected technologies become more affordable and accessible.
This may also be a partial response to the IoT privacy issue for those who do not want to completely abandon it. (However, in terms of security, more custom and controllable IoT will increase the surface that can be hacked – another element to consider, with more custom controls for more privacy not necessarily associated with robust device security.)  If you are looking for your own Alexa who bothers the blob topper. The couple uploaded an Instructables design guide and put the source code on GitHub. So fill out your boots.
Project Alias, of course, is not a solution to the underlying intelligent wizard tracking problem – which uses voice-insights to refine users' interest profiles, including advertising, to further refine targeting purposes ,