jfh

Add function to Alexa skill

14 posts in this topic

The new Alexa skill is very basic and could use added function to really allow voice integration with Control4.

 

- Allow additional keywords other than ON or OFF to activate a scene.  "Alexa, turn "Downstairs Lights Off" on"  isn't very intuitive.   At minimum a scene should support ACTIVATE and DEACTIVATE and RUN

- provide TTS programming in Composer to allow Alexa to speak user provided text (similar to Simon Says)

- ability to define command recognized response to something other than "Okay" (including no response); ideally the ability to set by device 

- integrate direct control of A/V devices, like setting a channel by name or number on a TV or radio station (or streaming channel) on a receiver

- ability to start/stop/reset a timer or change its interval

- integrated parameters in device drivers to allow events to fire on certain keywords (e.g. UP, DOWN)

 

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- add a property to light and scene drivers (especially Advanced Lighting) that will prevent Alexa discovery from finding/using that item.

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25 minutes ago, jfh said:

- add a property to light and scene drivers (especially Advanced Lighting) that will prevent Alexa discovery from finding/using that item.

This you can do in my.control4

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The lights, volume and thermostat controls are impressive but the voice scènes driver is a bit basic.  Some extra commands like "trigger" would be great.

The control4 skill does not seem to take precedence over the native Alexa commands which is a problem as reserved words are an issue. For instance with the voice scenes driver you can not use Turn on Bobs playlist because it looks for an Amazon playlist rather than the Control4 command.  

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1 minute ago, South Africa C4 user said:

This you can do in my.control4

 

Not the same thing.  Every light/scene/room is discovered by the skill and listed on control4.com.   You can then edit or disable it if you want.  I want a setting that says essentially "don't discover this as a device" so (a) the Alexa ap doesn't discover it and (b)  it doesn't show up at all when you list the devices on controk4.com

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Just now, jfh said:

 

Not the same thing.  Every light/scene/room is discovered by the skill and listed on control4.com.   You can then edit or disable it if you want.  I want a setting that says essentially "don't discover this as a device" so (a) the Alexa ap doesn't discover it and (b)  it doesn't show up at all when you list the devices on controk4.com

That would be a plus

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Agree the commands are a major limitation to usage.  Any chance this well be opened up?  Alexa, turn on "open garage door" is clunky.  Will have family members saying, "Alexa, open garage door" which of course will give an annoying response and there goes any chance of it be adopted in our house. Very low waf!!

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13 minutes ago, am350z said:

Agree the commands are a major limitation to usage.  Any chance this well be opened up?  Alexa, turn on "open garage door" is clunky.  Will have family members saying, "Alexa, open garage door" which of course will give an annoying response and there goes any chance of it be adopted in our house. Very low waf!!

 

I certainly hope that C4 will improve their Alexa integration.  For now, you could you the Epic systems driver to use UP/DOWN (Alexa, garage door up) of the Chowmain IFTTT driver (Alexa trigger open garage door) to be able to use less awkward phrasing.

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5 hours ago, jfh said:

 

I certainly hope that C4 will improve their Alexa integration.  For now, you could you the Epic systems driver to use UP/DOWN (Alexa, garage door up) of the Chowmain IFTTT driver (Alexa trigger open garage door) to be able to use less awkward phrasing.

Had ifttt installed.  Fun but still hope they add more flexibility in future.

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A few suggestions for the Alexa skill (trust C4 are reading):

1. Have an option to invert (then a scene like "Downstairs off" could be renamed "Downstairs" and inverted at MyControl4 and turned downstairs off would work... currently I have to use on to turn stuff off!

2. Use the new Amazon ESP to identify which Echo or Dot is responding via a variable in C4

3. Have the C4 skill take precedence over native Alexa... e.g. You currently cannot say "turn on xxx playlist" as Alexa looks in your Amazon music library for the playlist.

4. Add commands like "play", "stop", "trigger" etc.

5. Allow the passing of more than one variable in a command (like the voicepod driver was doing)

6. Have C4 automatically create a list of what can be played (like it does for lights) based on the CDs and playlists in your music library. This automatic creation of light commands is probably the biggest plus of the C4 skill at this stage.

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6 hours ago, South Africa C4 user said:

 

1. Have an option to invert (then a scene like "Downstairs off" could be renamed "Downstairs" and inverted at MyControl4 and turned downstairs off would work... currently I have to use on to turn stuff off!

 

do this yourself with the advanced lighting agent.

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