Human or Machine

Date Created


Project Team Size


Skills Used

Concept Development, Script Writting, Speech-Enabled Interaction, Voice User Interface, SSML, Sound Design, Audio Processing, Audio Editing

Why Do We Want Robots to Sound Like Us?

Machines that talk have existed in our lives for years. In 1939, Bell Laboratories changed everything by unveiling The Voder, the first electronic vocal synthesizer. Featured at the New York and San Francisco World’s Fair, it was played using 10 keys, a foot pedal and a bar controlled by the operator's wrist. The demonstration marked the first time the world heard what a modern machine voice could sound like.

Today, most of us find ourselves surrounded by many machines that talk (Alexa, Siri, Google Assistant, to name a few) and they increasingly sound a lot like us. With advances in artificial intelligence (AI), it’s getting harder to distinguish these synthetic voices from human ones.

'Human or Machine'

Put your own ears to the test. See if you can tell the difference between human and machine voices in “Human or Machine,” a deceptively simple,interactive voice game for Alexa.

To play Human or Machine on Alexa, say “Alexa, open Human or Machine.” You can also find it here on Amazon.

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