One of the biggest criticisms of the primary voice assistants on the market, including Alexa, Siri, and Google, is that the systems are closed and privacy of the data is not necessarily taken into account. Yes, Apple’s Siri is one that puts privacy at the top of its punch list, but the closed nature of it still makes some uncomfortable. This coupled with vague practices of contractors or employees reviewing voice commands for accuracy leads some to abandon the idea of voice assistants altogether.
Enter Almond, a project from Stanford University. Almond is a privacy-preserving voice assistant that is built on open-source code and is not part of a proprietary vendor ecosystem. The system has advanced features including connectivity to third-party applications and devices, and the ability to understand complex compound commands.
Additionally, services and recipes for Almond are also open-sourced and available on Thingpedia for download and inclusion into others’ instances.
Read more about Almond on Stanford’s site.