In the early ‘80s, Mark Tucker got his first computer, a TI-99/4a with a speech synthesizer module, as a Christmas present, and stayed up all night to learn how to program. He was in junior high at the time.
Even then, voice technology was his passion—though it mostly seemed like science fiction at the time. “Hollywood was saying where the technology could be,” Mark remembers. “I always kind of dreamed of the day it would happen.”
Now, Mark is a full-stack developer who’s on a mission to help businesses reach millions of customers through devices with Alexa. He owns Shazaml Design, based in Gilbert, Arizona, and says he wants to help companies connect with customers via voice, our most natural form of interaction. Voice technology is on the cusp of revolutionizing the way people interact with information, he says.
“I see, in the future, a lot more of the everyday devices in your home having Alexa installed on them,” he says. “There are just going to be more and more voice-enabled devices.”
Mark founded the Phoenix Alexa Meetup, and he developed the open-source Alexa skill serverless starter template. He wants new Alexa developers to know that getting started is easy. Anyone can get up and running quickly using the tutorials in the Alexa Skills Kit.
“You might be closer to building a skill than you think,” he says.