Sunday, October 7, 2012

RPi + SiriProxy + IRToy = VoiceTV

I've been working on a voice-controlled TV remote for many months now. Almost got a native iOS version working using an IR dongle from L5 and the OpenEars voice to text recogniser. Then life matters intervened and I've never completed the project.

In the meantime all sorts of developments in voice-controlled apps for iOS have popped up. Apple bought Siri for the iPhone 4S then crippled it. Immediately hackers got to work and developed Siri Proxy to allow a local server to intervene when certain commands were spoken to Siri.

Also Nuance released an SDK for Dragon Naturally Speaking with hefty licencing fees but a reasonable, free evaluation period. And Thinkflood's RedEye wifi controller is much easier to program now using URLs.

It occurred to me (and I'm obviously not the first to have thought it) that if I were to attach a USB IR Toy to a Raspberry Pi computer and add the Siri Proxy app I could turn the RPi into a voice controlled WiFi to IR TV controller.

So far I've got Siri Proxy installed on the RPI and I've added an Edimax EW-7717UN WiFi adapter. Coincidentally I had accidentally destroyed the Raspbian wheezy image on the RPi's SD card so installed a new one which just happened to have the latest drivers for the 7717. It was working as soon as I plugged it into the USB port.

Next task is to add the USB IR dongle and start adding some plugins to Siri Proxy to output commands to the dongle to control the TV.


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