Here are two reasons you might want to participate in this Kickstarter campaign:
The Mycroft Mark II is a hands-free, privacy-oriented, open-source smart speaker with a touch screen. It has advanced far-field voice recognition and multiple wake words for voice-based cloud services such as Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home, courtesy of Aaware’s technology. (See “Looking to turbocharge Amazon’s Alexa or Google Home? Aaware’s Zynq-based kit is the tool you need.”) The finished smart speaker requires a pledge of $129 (or $299 for three of them) but the dev kit version of the Mycroft Mark II requires a pledge of only $99, which is cheap as dev kits go. (Note: there are only 88 of these kits left, as of this writing.)
You could look at the Mycroft Mark II as a general-purpose, $99 Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC open-source dev kit with a touch screen that’s also been enabled for voice control, which you can use as a platform for a variety of IIoT, cloud computing, or embedded projects. That in itself is a very attractive offer. As the Mycroft Mark II Kickstarter project page says: “The Mark II has special features that make hacking and customizing easy, not to mention thorough documentation and a community to lean on when building. Support for our community is central to the Mycroft mission.” That’s a lot for a sub-$100 dev kit, don’t you think?