• Alexa for Squeezebox

    Breathing new life into your LMS.
    Add Alexa voice control to your Squeezeboxes.
    .

    Learn More See it in action
  • Currently in Alpha

    We're almost feature complete.
    Beta opening soon...

    LearnMore
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Built for Alexa

Built for Alexa

All the power of Alexa, all the flexibility of Squeezebox! A custom skill facilitates voice control for transport, content selection
Built for SqueezBox

Built for SqueezBox

Squeezebox is an amazingly flexible and resilient platform. Our custom plugin links to Alexa to add voice control.
Built for Simplicity

Built for Simplicity

An LMS plugin linked to an Alexa skill. Simple. Easy. Effective.
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Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Alexa for Squeezebox

These days, it seems that voice assistants are everywhere. In stand-alone devices, in a/v equipment, in household appliances, cars and more. Beyond a gimmick, voice applications are evolving to a point where they are approaching usefulness.

But what about legacy technology? Squeezebox was a great platform. There's still plenty about and there's a healthy second-hand market. The LMS is still viable and supported by a great community. 

The Hab-Tunes project seeks to breath new life into older technology by integrating voice control. The first such endeavor is Alexa for Squeezebox - an Alexa skill and LMS plugin that allows you control your Squeezebox by voice.

 

Simple

Comprising a standard Alexa skill and LMS plugin, it's familiar and easy to install, configure and use.

 
 

Secure

With https used when available, and no need for open ports locally, Alexa for Squeezebox helps keep the ner-do-wells at bay.

 
 

Robust

Developed over 2 years, with over 50 testers from around the world, Alexa for Squeezebox is stable and reliable.

 
 

Responsive

With ongoing maintenance and feature additions, you can shape the direction and request functionality you'd like to see.

 

The ambition is to add Alexa voice control to the LMS
and Squeezebox platform in a simple and intuitive way.
Find out more about the design philosophy, or dive right in. Learn More

Get Started

It's All About the Music


 

Simplicity and Flexibility.
All the hallmarks of Squeezebox - Now with added voice control.

Volunteer Testers


1

Extensive Alpha phase is ending, with Squeezebox users from around the world contribuiting time and ideas.

Ready for the World


 

With German localisation well advanced, Alexa for Squeezebox can be ported to any supported Alexa language.

Recent Blog Posts

The first test version of the skill went out on the Teamwork portal this week. Results were both good and bad.

The positives were that there's a really great team of testers involved with all levels of technical ability which really helps in finding both technical and usability issues. Everyone who tested is very engaged with great feedback and helpful suggestions.

The negative is that, at the moment, it doesn't really work :-(

Releasing the skill to the wild revealed a few fairly fundamental problems;

  • An infinite loop condition preventing skill access to the LMS was identified and fixed
  • In some cases, the skill completely crashed users LMS, requiring a full re-install.
  • The skill does not exit correctly on LMS shutdown, requiring users to force-shutdown
  • There's an issue with a missing library preventing the plugin communicating with the skill over https

The upshot of the above is that while a number of users managed to get the skill installed and registered, no-one could actually issue any useful commands to their squeezeboxes. The initial assessment was that there would be a quick fix and a follow-up release but on investigating further, there appears to be a fundamental issue around the shutdown of the httpd service that needs to be solved before anything else can be looked at. It's likely that the next release won't happen until sometime over Christmas when I can get a good run at the code.

I've already managed to solve a few of the issues;

  • The LMS crash (generating 403 errors) is caused by a default port 9000 being set in the plugin. This obviously conflicts with the LMS port itself. This is solved by setting another port as default and not allowing the proxy process to start until users have confirmed settings.
  • The failure to exit cleanly is caused by the http daemon remaining alive. I've restructured the shutdown code and believe this one is solved, subject to further testing.

So, good progress made already but a bit more to do....

 

 

Get Involved

Right now, site membership at Hab-Tunes.com is open. However, membership does not accrue any benefits. Participants in the ongoing closed alpha need to be members, and those who will participate in the forthcoming Beta cycle will also require membership.
Details on how to get involved can be found here