You know what was the weirdest thing on Internet this week? A talking fish. Ok. It is not a real fish, but that does not make it any less weird. According to The Verge, a developer by the name of Brian Kane pulled off a hack that turn Big Mouth Billy Bass from a singing animatronic fish into one that spits out Alexa’s response when you asked a question. How’s that for weird? Not weird, you say? Well, then we suggest you take a look at Big Mouth Billy Bass’ reassigned job as Alexa mouthpiece in the embedded video below and tell me differently.
How Brian managed to get that to work is anybody’s guess, but the report suggests that Alexa API, released April this year, may be responsible for the workings. If you are not aware, Big Mouth Billy Bass was a once-popular novelty animatronic singing prop conceived by Gemmy Industries. The original version was actually motion activated, obviously aimed to startled folks who walked past it, but motion sensor was subsequently replaced by button activation, so you can listen to the tune of Bobby McFerrin’s Don’t Worry, Be Happy, or Al Green’s Take Me To The River without being spooked. As far as song of choice is concerned, it is clear that the latter was a more fitting song as I am sure this bass is dying to get back into the water. Metaphorically speaking, that is.
Anyways, Brian’s hack didn’t make the fish any less scary. Alexa’s wake word prompts little bassy to turn its head towards the person and when a question is asked, it response in Alexa’s voice with the fish’s mouth moving in sync with the speech and that, folks, is possibly the disturbing part. The tail, btw, does not wiggles like the original. We are not sure if Brian’s original item does not wiggle at all, or was the tail wiggling sacrificed in process of the conversion. Anywho, there’s the future you are looking at. Talking fish. It does make you feel like living in the end of the rabbit hole, doesn’t it?
Image: screengrab from Facebook video.
via The Verge