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Voice API and Querki?
querki
jducoeur
Here's an *immensely* speculative idea, looking for thoughts from the folks who've used Querki (or simply been listening to me burble about it for all these years).

As I read through Ars' review of the new Google Home (tl;dr: it's the Google version of the Amazon Echo), which mentions that they're going to be opening up APIs, it occurs to me that Querki is going to need to interface with this sucker. I mean, I keep my shopping list in Querki; I'm obviously going to want to be able to say, "Ok Google, add milk to my shopping list". Or "tell me what I need to buy for Chicken Pizziola Mexicana" from my Recipes Space. Or "show me the lyrics to The Mary Ellen Carter" from my Songbook. Etc, etc.

Of course, wanting this is a far cry from making it happen, and none of this is even *remotely* easy. I'm not even sure to what degree it'll be possible to hook into the Google Assistant, to parse the stream. But we clearly *want* to be able to define listeners like this for Querki Apps eventually, so that you can easily build a Space or App in Querki and then hook it right into the listener system if you want. So I'm starting to ponder it.

(And yes, security is an issue. Fortunately, Querki is already designed to cope with interfacing securely to external identities; that's going to become front-and-center pretty soon, when we add Facebook integration.)

Hmm. And if we can do this, we potentially can use the same system for interfacing with text-chat systems, so that you can easily build chatbots on top of your Querki Apps. I'm not actually sure how useful that is, but it's the current hotness in the industry, so it would be nice to be *able* to do it, if it turns out to be real. (I'm pretty sure that this voice integration stuff *is* real, and is going to become important.)

Anyway, thoughts are welcomed -- other use cases, thoughts about architecture, whatever. None of this is going to happen soon, so I'm looking for brainstorming. Feel free to comment either here, or on the tracking Issue in Querki itself. Thanks!
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Controlling things via chat was big last year among a certain group of sysadmins. I asked them what they actually used them for, and got a big shrug. If you don't spend your life in chat, you can't remember the specialized commands...


That said, sending status messages to chat channels appears both useful and popular. You don't have to remember how to interact.


Interfaces seem to be a big thing. I know Facebook and Twitter are digging deep into bot interfaces, and of course there's IFTTT and Zapier. Slack bills interfaces as one of its key features. I'm not entirely sure what the prominent use cases are for Querki and various sorts of interfaces, and I'm not really a voice interface person myself, but that isn't the point. It seems like it's a 'build it and they will come' feature. If you have the interface opportunity, someone will come up with a good use for it. And adding onto all of that, Alexa is now coming to your car ... and I can definitely see the uses of hands free in the car with things in Querki.
(https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1598272670/dashbot-a-49-robot-for-your-dashboard from a group of maker's I support)

Generally agreed. But Querki's pretty hard-and-fast rule is that I don't add anything until I have at *least* three well-defined use cases in mind for it. That's because, without use cases, odds are that I don't really understand the problem well enough to build it correctly, and I will likely wind up wasting time building something that's too specific. (And over-complicating Querki without sufficient payoff.)

Hence, I'm trying to keep away from pure "build it and they will come" thinking, and instead start brainstorming now. The car idea is intriguing, although I don't think I have any Querki use cases yet that will benefit from it. (But I totally believe that they are likely. Thanks for the idea -- I will muse on that.)

This is, I should note, why Querki doesn't yet have any hooks to externally-defined APIs from other services: it's still too broad a problem, and I'm trying to get my hands around it. I have one solid use case so far -- hooking into eBay to make it easier to sell one's inventoried stuff on it -- but I want a couple more so that I can sketch out an appropriately general solution...

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