For this assignment we need to answer some relevant questions about our final project.
PACO is a digital companion platform allowing to develop for example a productivity assistant sitting on one's desk, a virtual baby sitter for kids, or a friendly companion for teenagers.
It will be able to sense the presence of his user, interact with it using voice, lights and touch, remind him appointments, suggest actions and record video and audio notes.
Total parts: 51 Euros Raspberry PI: 30 Euros
PCB Production for the SquareDuino
Laser cutting the digital companion box
Vynil cutting stickers for customizing the Companion looks and branding the box
Many hardware features of my original project plan have been dropped as they are already implemented at some level in the Raspberry PI Hardware and require only some programming on the Linux side.
These include video and photo acquisition, audio playback, audio recording, network connectivity.
I already implemented most of the additional boards used in the project during the semester.
They now must be re-engineered and integrated for fitting the digital companion form factor.
My choice for controlling Servos, OLED screen, LED Strip and Ultrasonic sensor is to reuse my Squareduino Arduino-compatible board.
The Python API and Raspberry web interface still needs to be implemented.
Finally the 3D printed and laser-cut cases must be designed and built.
The biggest concern is to be able to provide a fluid speech synthesis and recognition. While speech synthesis is feasible on the Raspberry PI, my idea of continuous speech recognition requires a cloud server, since the Google Speech API I was planning to use has been shout down since I started the project.
Also making the system easy to program is a challenge, especially since I want any kind of user to be easily customizing their digital companion with new tasks.
A preliminary evaluation will be carried by making the project present itself to the class during the project presentations. A further test will be producing a working digital companion for productivity enhancement to be shown during the Fab10 conference.