Amazon Echo's hackathon aims to bring personal assistant, Alexa, to life
This March, Amazon Echo will host its first Canadian hackathon, co-hosted by Toronto's Connected Lab. The challenge? Bring Amazon’s personal assistant, Alexa, to life.
Contestants will spend the weekend hacking the virtual personal assistant to develop new capabilities called “Skills” for Alexa to perform. Alexa is the voice-based operating system behind the Amazon Echo. The Echo is a small cylindrical speaker that can perform tasks.
Users can already ask Alexa to do things like play music, read news headlines, make to-do lists, dim the lights in a room or order products from Amazon.com.
The Amazon Echo is not available in Canada yet so the hackathon will provide designers and developers a first opportunity to explore the device.
"Voice-based technologies will soon play a big role in how we use new products and services, from inside your car to your living room," Mike Stern, CEO, Connected Lab, said in a statement.
"This is an amazing opportunity to explore the future of connected technology through the Amazon Echo and Alexa."
Connected Lab's Co-Founder and VP Engineering, Damian McCabe, will sit on the hackathon's panel of judges alongside Amazon executives and industry leaders.
The free event will include a comprehensive workshop where participants will receive an introduction to the Amazon Echo and instructions on how to build an Alexa Skill. In addition to working one-on-one with experts from Amazon and Connected Lab, participants will also have the opportunity to win an Amazon Echo, as well as paid internships with Connected Lab.
For more information or to register for the event, visit the event page.
WHAT: Amazon "Alexa and Echo" Hackathon hosted by Connected Lab
WHEN: Friday, March 11, 2016 - Sunday, March 13, 2016
WHERE: Connected Lab Headquarters, 370 King St W. Suite 300, Toronto, Ontario, M5V 1J9