To Turn an Amazon Echo into a Spy Device… or not?

I’m sitting here on a Friday evening looking at my Gen. 1 Amazon Echo and wondering if it’s hackable enough to turn it into a live tracking device. There’s ample enough documentation and tear downs floating around the Internet at this point to make the project doable. But… does it really need to be done? Will I just be doing another fun weekend project, or something meaningful that will bring people’s attention to the fact that our technology driven world is a complete mess?

Considerations:

#1: It definitely has enough microphones to be able to track multiple people’s locations through a room.

#2: There has to be an audio library out there somewhere to measure the size of a room based on echo location, and it has a speaker and multiple microphones. If nobody has written it yet… how long would it take to hack from other code or from scratch?

#3: Can I take it apart without completely destroying it?

#4: Do I even need to put it back together properly? Do I even care?

#5: I’m awful at soldering and such and there’s a distinct possibility I would destroy it before creating/wiring a port so that I can hook it up to my laptop for a little of the deep, deep, hot programming action.

#6: Is this worth at least a weekend of my time?

#7: I would love to say the phrase, “I pwned Alexa in her dirty face.” out loud and it actually have an accomplished meaning.

#8: This is an awesome diagram: https://anatomyof.ai/img/ai-anatomy-map.pdf

#9: Will my cat ever stop trying to kill it in the middle of the night? Seriously. He hates it. He doesn’t bother with the 3 Google Home/Nest devices we have, but the Echo is his late night nemesis.

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Next post A new start for an old project…

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