Mycroft 2018 in Review

Originally published at:

2018 was quite a year for Mycroft. Two crowdfunding efforts, a banner AMA, over 60 press articles written, and more. Let’s take some time to reflect on Mycroft’s 2018.

Top Skills

I wanted to lead with the top skills used by our Opted-In users for the year. We’ll ignore System skills like Stop, Configuration, Skill Installer, and Volume.

The top skills are the things most people expect from voice assistants. Date and time, weather, and general info. But where most industry research says IOT is closer to the bottom of the top ten or twenty skills, HomeAssistant is our fourth most used skills. IOT as a category is Mycroft’s third most used, after general knowledge and novelty. The top 11 skills are all in the Mycroft Marketplace, and 15 of the top 20 are. 3 of the top 20 are General Info, 5 are IoT, 5 are Novelty, and 4 are Media.

Technology Milestones

2018 held a bevy of milestones from the development team. In February, we released Mycroft to Beta with the 18.02b release. We deployed a DeepSpeech instance for evaluation in late March and debuted the Precise tagger in early April. In August, we released Mimic2 and our first high-quality voice. Later in August, Community Developer AIX released Mycroft for KDE Plasma. In mid-September, Picroft was updated to Raspbian Stretch to support the Pi 3B+ while keeping Pi 3B functionality. Near the end of September, we released both the Mycroft Skill Marketplace and the Mycroft Translate Platform and gave Mimic2 a speed boost.

Top Blogs

Much like we only get metrics back from our Opted-In user base, we only get web analytics from people who accept the cookies on our website. That policy was enacted in 2018, but we have a good guess at what percentage of people accept the cookies, so we can adjust for views after we made that change. Here are the top blogs for 2018:

  1. Compare Mycroft’s available voices
  2. Mycroft Available as Raspberry Pi Image
  3. Moving to DeepSpeech | Privacy, Speech to Text & Balance
  4. Mimic 2 is LIVE!
  5. Deepspeech in Mycroft
  6. Mark II Update: CM Selection, Design Updates, GUI Progress
  7. Mycroft’s World Tour
  8. Mark II Update: Delivery Timeline and Progress
  9. Mycroft Gets a Plasmoid
  10. The Mycroft Personal Server – Starting the Conversation
  11. What should be on our Raspberry Pi and Picroft Roadmap?
  12. What does Microsoft’s acquisition of GitHub mean for Mycroft?
  13. 18.08b – What you need to know as a Community Developer
  14. Major Picroft Update – Moving to Raspbian Stretch
  15. Languages are Hard
  16. Introducing Mycroft Translate
  17. Many Roads, One Destination
  18. Why Name it Mycroft?
  19. Improving Mycroft through Metrics: The Mycroft Benchmark
  20. Mark II Update: Assembly Prototypes and Audio Test

The most viewed blog of 2018 was the comparison of Mycroft’s voices that contained a teaser of what people could expect from Mimic2. Following just behind that post was the original Picroft announcement for 2017, which is commonly in the top ten most viewed posts per week. People love Picroft! The rest of the top 5 is rounded out by posts about Mimic2 and DeepSpeech. Mark II Updates from November and December made their way into the top ten, along with October’s conversation-starter around the Personal Server.

Community Milestones

Can’t forget about the Community, the people around the world who really make Mycroft what it is. In 2018, There were nearly 15,000 new Community Members who signed up for Mycroft. 320 people signed up to be Supporters and 3000 Opted-In to the Open Dataset, making Mycroft better for everyone. Skill Authors moved more than 25 skills into the Mycroft Skill Marketplace (a number nearly eclipsed already in 2019). In Mycroft Translate, the Community submitted more than 60,000 translations from over 500 users in 60 languages. There were over 200,000 Wake Word utterances sorted, leading to over 120,000 tagged good samples for Precise. The Community also contributed thousands of tagged STT utterances for DeepSpeech.

Company Milestones

Mycroft started off 2018 being recognized as a Kansas City Startup to Watch by Startland News. In April, we brought on Chris Veilleux from Farmobile and BATS Global Markets as our backend Software Architect. May brought a partnership with an accelerator companion WorkAround who helped round out the first 100,000 tagged utterances for the ‘Hey Mycroft’ Wake Word. In June, Mycroft made it possible for anyone to invest in Mycroft through our Regulation CF campaign, giving the Community another level of involvement. To build support for Mycroft Translate, Mycroft set off on a World Tour in August that visited 8 countries. In November, CEO Joshua Montgomery hosted a wildly successful AMA that brought hundreds of new Community members into the fold.

In Conclusion

Thanks to all the Community Members, Backers, Investors, testers, translators, taggers, Skill Authors, journalists, and everyone who made 2018 a year to remember. If you want a look at some more data, including the top 21-50 skills, check out this spreadsheet!