Bob the Skull

MMcFly

New Member
Hi all,

I have been a follower of this forum for years now. Recently, I decided to make a Christmas gift for my father -in-law. He loves the book series The Dresden Files and introduced me to it also. If you have not read the books, they are very good, I recommend them! Bob the Skull is a character that is a spirit of the air and is housed in a human skull. He gives out information to anyone who possesses him.

I decided to make him a Bob the Skull that he can ask questions. I went about this by taking a Raspberry pi 3B+ and putting google assistant on it. Instead of saying "Hey Google" or "OK Google" I made it to just say "Hey Bob" or "Bob" or anything with his name in the wake word. I went off of the tutorial by Sid on Hackster.io. His custom multiple wake word tutorial was great! Funny thing is I didn't know what I was doing, so I had to reformat and reinstall everything at least 3 times. The beauty about raspberry pi and anything open source is you can re-download and re-flash the image.

I then got an anatomically correct human skull, a speaker, microphone, yellow LEDs, wires, beard board, a button to turn it on and off safely, and some paint. The runes and symbols were ground in with a dremel. the symbols themselves are personal to him. I put his name in and used other Celtic symbols, since he is mostly Irish descent.

This was the result on the outside:

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Here is the inside with all of the electronics put into place:

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And I have the speaker facing down so the sound shoots in all directions.
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So when you say his name, his eye sockets light up. when you ask a question or give a command, his eyes pulse and he answers you. Currently, his capabilities are limited, but as I learn more about the assistant for Raspberry Pi, I can add more for him. This was fun and I'm happy with how it turned out!
 

Kerr Avon

Master Member
Neat! I did a run of Bobs a while back, I still have one unfinished skull, it might be cool to try doing that with it!
 

MMcFly

New Member
Thanks guys! I have a video to demonstrate him, but I'm not sure how to post videos on here.
<-------Noob :)

A few issues I've had with this build was that, like i said before, hes very limited in what he can do, he doesn't show up on the google home app, and because I made him with a custom wake word (maybe because of the type of wake word I recorded) he wakes up at any sudden contrast in sounds. Which sometimes can be fun. He will respond to things I was talking to someone else about then I get to say "shut up Bob" or "No one was talking to you, Bob"
 

Zaphod

Well-Known Member
Neat! I did a run of Bobs a while back, I still have one unfinished skull, it might be cool to try doing that with it!
I have one, that I never had the chance to finish.
Would love to see a Bob's brain as a kit, as I don't have the skills to create this.
 

Jintosh

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I loved Dresden. I wish it had gone more seasons. This seems very well done, and the voice activation is cool.
 

Jintosh

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
If you post you video to YouTube, you can then click the LINK button here (the icon that literally looks like a chain link above) and then just paste the link to your YouTube video.
 

MMcFly

New Member
If you post you video to YouTube, you can then click the LINK button here (the icon that literally looks like a chain link above) and then just paste the link to your YouTube video.
Cool! thank you for the help. I thought it was something local to the forums.

Here is the first test for bob the skull.

And here is him at night-
 

Duncanator

Sr Member
This is a great idea!
It gives me hope that I can build a Farnaan from those commercials. I just need to figure out how to have it only give crappy advice.
Farnhaan-device.jpg
 
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