Webinar on ‘Building Engaging Voice Experiences with Alexa’

The Webinar was held on topic ‘Building Engaging Voice Experiences with Alexa’ by Mr. Karthik Raghubathy. Mr. Karthik is a Solutions Architect for Alexa Skills Kit at Amazon.
The purpose of webinar was to introduce students with Alexa and how they can work on building skills for Alexa and use them in their projects for the Smart India Hackathon (SIH) 2020.
He began with the introduction of Alexa, what actually Alexa is, what are Alexa’s components, its design etc. He notified the students about the technologies used in building Alexa like Machine Learning, Automatic Speech Recognition, Speech Synthetic Markup Language (SSML), Cloud and the problems faced while using them. Moving on, He narrated the working of Alexa, its processing and how Alexa works from playing songs to fetching information to using it in a smart home.
Further he explained how one can extend the Alexa capabilities by installing "skills". He went on with presenting a live demo to the listeners how they can create skills for Alexa using web services (either Amazon's AWS Lambda service or any custom web service) and backend languages (like python or node.js). He threw light upon how Alexa is activated, and how Alexa understands the request, the invocation name etc. He explained the programming working at the back-end of Alexa. He also explained how the Alexa learns human expressions and gave a demo example too. He unfolded a problem i.e. a single line or statement can be said in different ways and also a word can have different meaning depending upon the use and language which makes it difficult to understand the request and fulfil it. Following the demonstration, he cleared doubts of students. The session ended with a Thank you note where Mr. Karthik shared some useful resource links with the students and gave his wishes to them for SIH 2020.
The webinar was extremely useful for the students as they got a chance to gather information about Alexa, its working, how they can build skill sets for Alexa for incorporating it in their projects. The webinar gave a broader aspect of the field- Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning to the students and it was extremely useful.
Student Attended:60
Faculty Attended: 6