The Mycroft Mark II will be the world’s first open source voice assistant speaker. To the average person, this kickstarter project doesn’t mean much other than that there is another voice assistant that will get your name wrong. But here’s why you should be more excited for Mycroft.
First and foremost, it’s open source. Which means that your data is private. Whatever you tell Mycroft is between you and Mycroft. Mycroft is not controlled by some giant corporation. “Well, I don’t have anything to hide, so it doesn’t matter to me… Right?”. Wrong.
Although you most likely aren’t a terrorist, you should still be cautious of your privacy. Why? Because privacy is the hallmark of an open society. That may sound counterintuitive, but next time you see an ad for something you didn’t know you wanted, ask yourself how Google knows. In fact, from what I can tell, Google knows me better than my own mother.
In laymen’s terms, targeted ads are annoying, and should not be encouraged. Joshua Montgomery is the founder of Mycroft, though this would not have been possible without the help of Mycroft’s community. In the days since Mycroft Mark I, the community of likeminded individuals has grown exponentially. And this community is responsible for the addition of more than 140 skills in Mycroft Mark II.
Rest assured that the speaker itself is nothing to overlook. The active voice cancellation on this speaker is no joke. Partnering with Aaware, a firm based out of Silicon Valley, Mycroft uses a multi-microphone array to reduce interference in the room and listen to nothing but your voice.
You can fund Mycroft right now (even though its met its target nearly 7 times over). Its all primed to launch in December 2018. Though we expect it to launch somewhere in early 2019, after the traditional Kickstarter delay, so mark your calendars!